Recent developments on the situations covered in this Forecast are addressed in the relevant briefs. Interesting developments on other issues in the Council during June included:
Protection of Civilians: On 7 July the Council held an open debate on protection of civilians in armed conflict (S/PV.6354 and resumption 1). The debate featured the final briefing from Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes to the Council on this issue before leaving that post. Holmes urged the Security Council, “to work with member states to craft new solutions [… that] must embrace an expansive vision of protection that extends beyond the immediate concerns of the battlefield [… to] look to prevention as well as to mitigation.” The Council also heard a statement from High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay. In addition to the Security Council, representatives of 21 states and the EU spoke during the debate.
UN Security Council and AU Peace and Security Council Meeting: On 9 July members of the Security Council held a consultative meeting at UN headquarters with the AU Peace and Security Council and top AU Commission officials. Topics discussed included enhancing cooperation between the two Councils and means to strengthen cooperation between the two bodies and modalities for organising future consultations between them. Participants also focused on two specific conflict situations where the AU and the UN are partners, Sudan and Somalia. Furthermore, they also discussed the border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea. The joint communiqué (S/2010/392) issued at the end of the three-hour meeting said that participants recognised the need to enhance the predictability, sustainability and flexibility of financing the AU’s peace and security capability, stressed the urgent need to protect civilians in Darfur, underscored the importance of full and timely implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in Sudan and agreed on modalities for future meetings between the two Councils, to be conducted annually, with the next one to be held no later than end of June 2011.
DPRK (Naval Incident in the Yellow Sea): On 9 July the Council adopted a presidential statement (S/PRST/2010/13) condemning the attack on 26 March which led to the sinking of the ROK naval ship Cheonan and the loss of 46 lives. The Council determined that the incident posed a danger to regional and international security. While noting that the DPRK has stated it had no involvement in the incident, the statement expressed deep concern in light of the conclusion of the Joint Civilian-Military Investigation Group that the DPRK was responsible for the sinking. (The investigation was led by the ROK and included experts from Australia, Canada, Sweden, the UK and the US.) The Council called for full adherence to the Korean Armistice Agreement and encouraged the resumption of direct dialogue and negotiation in order to settle outstanding issues on the Korean peninsula and to avoid conflicts and escalation (S/PV.6355).
Terrorism: The Council issued press statements condemning two terrorist acts that took place in July. On 12 July the Council condemned the 11 July terrorist bombings that killed over fifty people in Kampala, Uganda (SC/9980). On 16 July the members of the Council condemned the terrorist bombings that occurred that day in Zahedan, Iran which killed over two dozen people (SC/9986).
West Africa (UNOWA): On 13 July Said Djinnit, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and head of UNOWA, briefed the Council on the latest report (S/2010/324) of the Secretary-General on the work of the Office (S/PV.6358).
Guinea-Bissau: On 15 July the head of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS) briefed the Council (S/PV.6359) on the Secretary-General’s UNIOGBIS report (S/2010/335). The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Guinea-Bissau, Adelino Mano Queta, also participated in the meeting. On 22 July the Council adopted a presidential statement (S/PRST/2010/15) expressing concern at the prevailing security situation and threats to constitutional order in Guinea-Bissau. It called on the government to release immediately all those detained in the events of 1 April or prosecute them with full respect for due process.
Conflict Prevention: On 16 July the Council held an open debate on the topic “Optimising the Use of Preventive Diplomacy Tools: Prospects and Challenges in Africa” (S/PV.6360 and resumption 1). The meeting was presided over by Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs Henry Odein Ajumogobia. A presidential statement acknowledging the importance of enhancing the culture of settlement of disputes by peaceful means and requesting the Secretary-General to submit within 12 months a report making recommendations on how best to utilise the preventive diplomacy tools within the UN system and in cooperation with other actors was adopted during the meeting (S/PRST/2010/14).
Sudan: In closed consultations on 19 July, the Security Council and UNAMID troop and police-contributing countries were briefed by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and Department of Field Support officials (S/PV.6361). On 30 July the Council adopted resolution 1935 renewing UNAMID’s mandate for a further 12 months. On 27 July the Joint Special Representative of UNAMID, Ibrahim Gambari, briefed the Council (S/PV.6365) on the latest Secretary-General’s report on UNAMID (S/2010/382) and members met in consultations following the briefing. In closed consultations on 29 July Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Alain Le Roy briefed Council members on the Secretary-General’s report on UNMIS (S/2010/388). Under-Secretary-General for Field Support Susana Malcorra also briefed. On 7 July the Sudan Sanctions Committee was briefed by the Panel of Experts.
Djibouti/Eritrea: On 20 July Council members held a meeting (S/PV.6362) under the heading of “Peace and Security in Africa,” to discuss the Secretary-General’s 22 June report (S/2010/327) on Eritrea’s compliance with resolution 1907 regarding the border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea. Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs B. Lynn Pascoe commended the efforts of Eritrea and Djibouti to negotiate a settlement. Representatives of Djibouti and Eritrea also spoke. The president of the Council read a press statement confirming that the Council had concluded that the targeted sanctions contained in resolution 1916 remain necessary and should continue.
Afghanistan: On 23 July Council members were briefed by the Secretary-General on his visit to Afghanistan for the 20 July Kabul International Conference. Following the briefing the Council issued a press statement (SC/9992) welcoming the Kabul Conference communiqué and the commitments made by the Afghan government. The statement also looked forward to the timely implementation of these commitments and called on the international community to support the Kabul conference by aligning its assistance with Afghan priorities.
Council Working Methods: On 27 July the Council adopted a presidential note (S/2010/507) on working methods. The note was the result of several months of intensive work under Japan’s chairmanship of the Security Council’s Informal Working Group on Documentation and Other Procedural Questions that included an open debate in April. It focused in particular on enhancing Council transparency, as well as interaction and dialogue with non-Council members. The July note updates the 2006 presidential note on working methods (S/2006/507) and incorporates the Council’s previous agreements on its implementation reached in 2007 and 2008. New issues include a section on planning and reporting for Security Council missions, the expression of Council’s intention to maintain regular communication with the Peacebuilding Commission and its intention to enhance the relationship with troop-contributing countries.