Insights on Côte d’Ivoire
It seems that contrary to expectations the draft resolution to extend the temporary transfer of troops and helicopters from the UN mission in Liberia (UNMIL) to the UN mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) might be delayed to Friday or even Monday. The main reason seems to be that the Council is awaiting a letter from the department of peacekeeping operations (DPKO) explaining their proposal to extend the temporary transfer. Apparently the need to extend UNOCI’s mandate by the end of June also seems to be complicating consideration of the period of continuation of the temporary transfer.
The current redeployment authority will lapse on Monday 16 May and it seems that Council members are hoping to adopt an extension by Friday 13 May.
Council members seem supportive of an extension of the troops and helicopters. (At present the troop component is not staffed, as the previous troop contingents rotated back to their countries). However, it seems that Council members want to keep this authority in place as a form of reserve for UNOCI to cover any contingency.
However there are concerns that this temporary authority should not become long term and perhaps affect UNMIL’s ability to provide security and support to Liberian authorities in the lead-up and running of Liberia’s presidential and parliamentary elections, which are expected in October. The DPKO letter may address this issue.