December 2007 Monthly Forecast

Posted 29 November 2007
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In December Italy will have the presidency of the Council. The newly elected Council members Burkina Faso, Croatia, Costa Rica, Libya and Vietnam will attend informal consultations and meetings of the subsidiary bodies as guest observers in preparation for taking up their seats in January.

It seems that the Council may have four major public debates in December:

However, there remains uncertainty about the procedural format for both the Kosovo and Middle East items.

In addition open briefings are likely on:

  • Somalia (which is seen as at a critical stage);
  • Sudan (including from the ICC Prosecutor);
  • Lebanon (including from the UNIIIC Commissioner);
  • the Council mission to Timor-Leste; and
  • the humanitarian situation in Africa (from the Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs on his latest trip).

A large number of expiring mandates dictates that December as usual will be an extremely busy month. The mandates expiring in December and requiring Council decisions (some of these will be by way of letter to the Secretary-General as opposed to resolutions) are:

A number of other situations are likely to be discussed in informal consultations and could result in outcomes approved in formal open meetings. These include:

  • Darfur (the peace process and the need for progress with the UNAMID deployment);
  • Lebanon (tensions over the presidential election continue);
  • Myanmar (a further discussion is possible); and
  • the non-proliferation issues relating to Iran (it is unclear whether the ongoing meetings between the E3+3 on the drafting of a third sanctions resolution will produce a concrete proposal for action in the Council.)

Council members will also need to find time to discuss the allocation of chairmanships of the various Council subsidiary bodies for 2008.

Finally, residual matters relating to Iraq, including the final expiry of the oil-for-food programme and various outstanding issues between Iraq and Kuwait, are also expected to be before the Council in December.

Full forecast