Debate on UN Mission in Afghanistan
On Monday (19 December), the Council will hold a debate on the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). It seems that the debate will focus on the key points of the Secretary-General’s 13 December quarterly report on UNAMA, as well as the International Conference on Afghanistan held in Bonn on 5 December. (The Bonn Conference reaffirmed the international community’s longer-term commitment to support Afghanistan beyond 2014.) It appears that Hervé Ladsous, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping, will brief the Council. Afghanistan’s Deputy Foreign Minister, Jawed Ludin, is also likely to speak.
The Secretary-General’s recent report comprehensively analyses the situation on the ground and discusses longer-term international engagement in Afghanistan. It also focuses on the recent political and security developments, including the impact of the 20 September assassination of former President Burhanuddin Rabbani (Head of the High Peace Council) on the peace process, recent violence against civilians, as well as the discussions at the traditional Loya Jirga held in Kabul from 16 to 19 November. (The Loya Jirga, a gathering of some 2,000 elders and community leaders, was to have focused on the strategic partnership between Afghanistan and the US, but was expanded to include consideration of the future peace process following Rabbani’s assassination.)
The report also discusses the efforts of UNAMA and other international actors in helping Afghanistan to strengthen human rights, governance and the rule of law, while also promoting longer-term socioeconomic development and combating the production and trade in narcotics.
The Council has been negotiating a presidential statement on the recent Bonn Conference. It seems that the negotiations have focused on how to reflect the consensus reached at Bonn. It is possible that the Council will adopt the presidential statement at the debate on Monday.