January 2018 Monthly Forecast

Status Update

Central African Republic

On 4 December, Council members issued a press statement condemning an attack on a MINUSCA detachment in Bria that day by suspected anti‑Balaka elements, which resulted in one Mauritanian peacekeeper killed and two other Mauritanian peacekeepers and one Zambian peacekeeper injured (SC/13102). Also on that day, the CAR Sanctions Committee met with its Panel of Experts to discuss the final report of the panel and hear briefings by the UN Mine Action Service and UN Institute for Disarmament Research on weapons and ammunition management in the country (SC/13123).


On 5 December, Council members were briefed on Yemen in consultations by Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock. On 22 December, Council members condemned in a press statement the 19 December ballistic missile attack by the Huthis against Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia (SC/13143).

International Criminal Tribunals

On 6 December, the Council held a debate on the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals in which the presidents and prosecutors of these bodies briefed (S/PV.8120). The meeting focused on the assessment reports of the Residual Mechanism and the ICTY (S/2017/971 and S/2017/1001) and on the ICTY’s closure on 31 December 2017.

Subsidiary Bodies

On 8 December, the Council held the annual briefing of subsidiary body chairs from outgoing elected Security Council members, which this year were Egypt, Italy, Japan, Senegal, Ukraine and Uruguay (S/PV.8127).

Great Lakes Region

On 8 December, the Council adopted resolution 2389, reaffirming that the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the Region remains an essential mechanism to achieve durable peace and stability, and inviting the Secretary-General “to assess the progress, challenges and shortcomings in the implementation of the Framework, and to present his vision, supported by concrete recommendations, to the Council in his next report”, which is due by 31 March 2018.


On 11 December, the Council held its fourth meeting on the human rights situation in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). The briefers were the High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein (by video teleconference) and Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Miroslav Jenča (S/PV.8130). The meeting was convened in response to a joint letter from France, Italy, Japan, Senegal, Sweden, Ukraine, the UK, the US and Uruguay (S/2017/1006). At the beginning of the meeting there was a procedural vote to adopt the agenda at the request of several members, which was subsequently adopted with 10 votes in favour, three against (Bolivia, China and Russia) and two abstentions (Egypt and Ethiopia). On 12 December, the Council was briefed in consultations by Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman on his visit to the DPRK from 5 to 8 December. It was the first visit by a senior Secretariat official since 2011. While in Pyongyang, Feltman met with Minister for Foreign Affairs Ri Yong Ho and Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs Pak Myong Guk. He also met with the UN country team and diplomatic corps and visited UN project sites. On 15 December, the Council held a ministerial-level meeting on the “Threats and Challenges posed by the DPRK to International Peace and Security”, with Secretary-General António Guterres as the briefer. Japanese Foreign Minister Tarō Kōno chaired the meeting, and the DPRK and the Republic of Korea participated under Rule 37 of the Provisional Rules of Procedure of the Council. The Secretary-General warned that an accidental escalation could lead to conflict on the Korean peninsula and emphasised that it was time to re-establish and strengthen communications channels, including inter-Korean and military-to-military ones in order to lower the risk of miscalculation or misunderstanding (S/PV.8137). On 22 December the Council adopted resolution 2397 tightening sanctions on DPRK (S/PV.8151).


On 12 December, the Council was briefed by Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman and Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict Pramila Patten on developments in Myanmar (S/PV.8133). Representatives from Bangladesh and Myanmar also participated in the meeting. In the consultations that followed, besides Feltman and Patten, representatives from OCHA, OHCHR, and UNHCR were present. Feltman welcomed the recent Memorandum of Understanding between Myanmar and Bangladesh but noted that although the violence had subsided, the flow of refugees to Bangladesh was continuing, and Myanmar leaders needed to adopt measures to defuse tensions and create an environment for safe and dignified repatriation of refugees and internally displaced persons. Patten reported on her visit to Rohingya refugee camps and said the accounts she heard of sexual atrocities against girls and women in Rakhine state indicated a pattern of grave violations of international humanitarian and human rights law.

Golan Heights (UNDOF)

On 12 December, Council members met in consultations with troop-contributing countries to UNDOF. On 14 December, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Bintou Keita briefed Council members in consultations on the report on UNDOF for the period from 10 September to 24 November 2017 (S/2017/1024). On 21 December, the Council adopted resolution 2394 renewing the mandate of UNDOF until 30 June 2018 (S/PV.8145).


On 12 December, France initiated a meeting under “any other business” on the situation in Lebanon. Ambassador François Delattre (France) briefed the Council on the 8 December meeting of the International Support Group for Lebanon which was held in Paris. On 19 December, the Council adopted a press statement that welcomed Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s return to Lebanon and his decision to continue his term (SC/13130). Furthermore, the statement reiterated the need to protect Lebanon from crises that are destabilising the Middle East.


On 13 December, François Louncény Fall, Special Representative and head of UNOCA, briefed the Security Council on the Secretary-General’s semi-annual report on UNOCA (S/2017/995) and the implementation of the UN regional strategy to combat the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) (S/PV.8134). The meeting was followed by consultations.


On 13 December, Special Representative for Liberia and head of the UNMIL, Farid Zarif briefed Council members in consultations. As mandated by resolution 2333, Zarif provided an “oral update” following the presidential elections Liberia. In particular, Zarif briefed the Council on the latest developments regarding the organisation of the run-off elections and transition arrangements. 

Climate Change 

On 15 December, the Security Council held an Arria-formula meeting on the theme “Preparing for security implications of rising temperatures”. The meeting was co-organised by a wide array of member states, including Council members France, Italy, Japan, Sweden and the UK; the Netherlands and Peru, which enter the Council in 2018; and Germany, the Maldives and Morocco. Briefers included Halbe Zijlstra, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, and Caitlin Werrel, the co-founder and President of the Center for Climate and Security, a Washington, D.C.-based policy institute that focuses on climate-related security threats.

Small Arms

On 18 December, the High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Izumi Nakamitsu, briefed the Council on the Secretary-General’s biennial report (S/2017/1025) on the spread of small arms, light weapons and their ammunition (S/PV.8140).


On 19 December, the Council held a briefing on the implementation of resolution 2231, adopted on 20 July 2015, which endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on Iran’s nuclear programme (S/PV.8143). Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman briefed on the Secretary-General’s 8 December 2017 report (S/2017/1030) on the implementation of the resolution. In addition, Ambassador Sebastiano Cardi (Italy), the Council’s 2231 facilitator, reported on the work of the Council related to Iran; and Joanne Adamson of the EU briefed on the work of the JCPOA’s Joint Commission. (The EU is the coordinator of the Commission, which is made up of the eight parties to the JCPOA and is responsible for overseeing the agreement’s implementation.) 

Complex Contemporary Challenges to International Peace and Security

On 20 December, the Council held an open debate on “addressing complex contemporary challenges to international peace and security” (S/PV.8144).  Secretary-General António Guterres briefed, describing various security challenges, including nuclear weapons, climate change, terrorism, drug smuggling, and human trafficking.  He underlined the importance of conflict prevention and women’s participation in sustaining peace.


On 21 December 2017, the Council adopted resolution 2395, renewing the mandate of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate, the Secretariat body that assists the Counter-Terrorism Committee, as a special political mission, until 31 December 2021. On the same day, the Council adopted resolution 2396 on foreign terrorist fighters and returnees. The resolution acknowledges that returning and relocating foreign terrorist fighters have participated in attacks in their countries of origin, or third countries, including against public spaces and civilian targets and aims to address this threat.


On 21 December, Council members issued a press statement underscoring the importance that peacekeeping operations endeavour to minimise their impact on the sustainability of the ecosystems where they are deployed, based on sound consideration of the risks, benefits and costs (SC/13134).

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