July 2008 Monthly Forecast

Posted 27 June 2008
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AFRICA

Côte d’Ivoire

Expected Council Action
The Council is expecting to receive the Secretary-General’s report on the Côte d’Ivoire peace process. The mandate of the United Nations Mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) expires on 30 July and Council action on renewal is expected.

Recent Developments
The Secretary-General’s previous report was issued on 15 April (S/2008/250). A technical assessment mission visited Côte d’Ivoire from 3 to 12 March to assess progress in preparing for elections and options for the mission in supporting the remaining tasks under the Ouagadougou Agreement.

The April report noted that the security situation was generally stable but expressed concern about the lack of progress on disarmament in the western part of the country, as well as the level of violent crime.

In April UNOCI also indicated that almost half a million Ivorians had been issued with new birth certificates, an initial step in allowing them to formally seek recognition of their right to vote in the planned national elections.

On 29 April, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General briefed the Council in private informal consultations and the Council issued a presidential statement welcoming the Ivorian decisions to hold presidential elections on 30 November 2008. The Council stated that it was encouraged by the adoption of a Code of Good Conduct for elections by all political parties, under the auspices of the Secretary-General. It also encouraged the mobile courts’ process for identifying the Ivorian population and registering voters, and anticipated the publication of the electoral list.

On 3 May, 1,000 Forces nouvelles rebels gathered at a demobilisation centre in the northern city of Bouaké to commence active disarmament. On 14 May, 192 FN ex-combatants received diplomas from the UN after completing a disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration (DDR) programme, including a course in cooperative management, at Ferkessédougou in northern Côte d’Ivoire. However, it is estimated that about 43,000 rebels have not yet disarmed. The present demobilisation initiative aims at having all Forces nouvelles fighters go to six specially prepared demobilisation sites in the northern and western parts of the country to disarm within the next five months before the elections.

On 9 to 10 June, a Council mission visited Côte d’Ivoire where it met key parties and partners on the ground. During the visit, it expressed support for the peace process and encouraged the parties to ensure a conducive environment for the holding of free, open and fair elections in November. The Council delegation also recalled the importance of certification of all stages of the electoral process by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General.

The Secretary-General visited Côte d’Ivoire from 22 to 24 April. He reaffirmed the UN’s continued support and encouraged key political actors to continue making progress.

Key Issues
The key issue for the Council in July is renewal of the UNOCI mandate. Other issues likely to be addressed include DDR, the national identification and the voter registration processes and how to ensure that the electoral calendar is not disrupted yet again. The future drawdown of UNOCI is also likely to come up although no decisions are expected.

Council Dynamics
Council members seem agreed on a cautious approach of maintaining the current mandate for UNOCI and the French forces, and preserving UNOCI’s troop level until the presidential elections. The Secretary-General recommends that the mission’s troop level should be maintained until two key benchmarks have been reached—the disarmament process and the restoration of state authority throughout the country. Those key benchmarks are presently not expected to be achieved until after the elections.

France is the lead country in the Council on this issue together with African members.

UN Documents

Latest Security Council Resolutions

  • S/RES/1795 (15 January 2008) extended the mandate of UNOCI until 30 July 2008 and requested a report on the preparation of the electoral process no later than 15 April 2008.
  • S/RES/1782 (29 October 2007) extended the sanctions regime until 31 October 2008.
  • S/RES/1765 (16 July 2007) extended the mandate of UNOCI until 15 January 2008.
  • S/RES/1761 (20 June 2007) extended the mandate of the Group of Experts until 31 October 2007.
  • S/RES/1727 (15 December 2006) renewed the sanctions regime until 31 October 2007.
  • S/RES/1721 (1 November 2006) prolonged by one year the transitional period in Côte d’Ivoire and reinforced the powers of the prime minister.

Selected Presidential Statement

  • S/PRST/2008/11 (29 April 2008) welcomed the approval by the Ivorian authorities the Independent Electoral Commission proposal to postpone the presidential elections to 30 November 2008.
  • S/PRST/2007/8 (28 March 2007) endorsed the Ouagadougou Agreement, supported the appointment of Guillaume Soro as prime minister and requested a report from the Secretary-General on the UN’s future role in the peace process.

Selected Council Debate

  • S/PV.5915 (18 June 2008) was the Council debate on the visiting mission to Africa from 31 May to 10 June 2008.

Latest Security Council Press Statement

Latest Secretary-General’s Report

  • S/2008/250 (15 April 2008) was the Secretary-General’s latest report on UNOCI.

Other

  • S/2008/460 (15 July 2008) was the report of the Security Council mission to Africa.
  • S/2008/347 (30 May 2008) were the terms of reference for the Council visiting mission to Africa from 31 May to 10 June.
  • S/2008/235 (14 April 2008) was the latest report of the Group of Experts on Côte d’Ivoire.
  • S/2007/515 (30 August 2007) was the report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Côte d’Ivoire.
  • S/2007/223 (19 April 2007) was the latest International Working Group’s communiqué, requesting its two co-chairs to consult with ECOWAS and the AU on its future role and recommendations to Security Council.
  • S/2007/144 (13 March 2007) contained the Ouagadougou Agreement.

Other Relevant Facts

Special Representative of the Secretary-General

Choi Young-Jin (Republic of Korea)

Group of Experts

Grégoire Bafouatika, Republic of Congo (aviation)
Agim de Bruycker, Belgium (diamonds)
Lipika Majumdar Roy Choudhury, India (finance/Coordinator of the Group)
Claudio Gramizzi, Italy (arms)
Vernon Paul Kulyk, Canada (customs)

Size and Composition of UNOCI

  • Strength as of 30 April 2008: 9,168 total uniformed personnel, including 7,835 troops, 194 military observers and 1,139 police
  • Key troop-contributing countries: Bangladesh, Ghana, Jordan, Morocco and Pakistan

Approved UNOCI Budget

1 July 2007 – 30 June 2008: $470.86 million

Full forecast