What's In Blue

Posted Tue 9 Aug 2011

Somalia and Eritrea Sanctions Committee Meeting

This afternoon (9 August) the Somalia and Eritrea Sanctions Committee will be meeting to discuss the recommendations in the report (S/2011/433) of the sanctions committee’s Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea. (On 29 July, in resolution 2002, the Council renewed the Somalia/Eritrea Monitoring Group’s mandate and asked the Committee to consider the recommendations in the report on improving compliance with the arms embargoes and implementation of targeted measures imposed on both countries. The Committee met last week for an initial discussion of these recommendations.)

The Monitoring Group report also contains information on violations by Eritrea as well as evidence of its support for Somali armed opposition groups. Eritrea denies these conclusions. Also on 3 August, Eritrea made public in a press statement that Ethiopia is seeking a Security Council resolution imposing further sanctions on Eritrea. Among the restrictions it apparently calls for are for countries to block remittances to Eritrea, stop mining activities and to avoid buying gold and other minerals from Eritrea.

It appears at the moment that none of the Council members have formally taken up the issue of further sanctions. But the Monitoring Group report has led some Council members to feel that action needs to be taken although there are differing ideas about what should be done. Other members are less inclined to see sanctions as a feasible option at this point. It also appears that there is a sense that it would be best if an African Council member were to take the lead on any new sanctions initiative against Eritrea.

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