What's In Blue

Posted Tue 3 Mar 2015

Security Council’s March Programme of Work

The Security Council began the month of March by adopting a resolution on South Sudan sanctions right after agreeing on its programme of work this morning (3 March). Then this afternoon Council members had consultations on Yemen where they were briefed by the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Yemen, Jamal Benomar.

France has chosen to have an open debate on children and armed conflict, an issue it has had a long commitment to, during its presidency. The open debate will focus on child victims of non-state armed actors, with the Secretary-General briefing. Following the debate France will produce a non-paper with the key proposals from the debate. There will also be the quarterly debate on Afghanistan with a briefing by Special Representative Nicholas Haysom, during which a resolution renewing the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan’s mandate will be adopted. A debate on Haiti is scheduled for the middle of March, with a briefing by Special Representative Sandra Honoré.

A key event this month will be a Council field mission to Africa in the second week of March. The Council delegation will visit the Central African Republic, Burundi and AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, where Council members will hold their annual consultative meeting with the AU Peace and Security Council. Following the mission there will be a briefing to the Council on the visit later in March.

A key priority this month for the French presidency is the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Ahead of an adoption scheduled towards the end of the month to renew the mandate of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), there will also be a briefing followed by consultations on the DRC where the head of MONUSCO, Martin Kobler and Special Envoy to the Great Lakes Region Said Djinnit are expected to brief.

Later this week the Council will focus on Libya with briefings followed by consultations by Bernardino León, head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), and by the chair of the 1970 Libya Sanctions Committee, Ambassador Haniff Hussein (Malaysia). The Council is also scheduled to adopt a technical roll-over resolution extending the mandate of UNSMIL and the mandate of the Panel of Experts and sanctions regime until the end of March.

Sudan and South Sudan continue to be key features of the programme of work. There will be a briefing and consultations on the AU/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) and consultations on Sudan-South Sudan relations. Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hervé Ladsous is expected to brief on UNAMID and Special Envoy Haile Menkerios on developments between Sudan and South Sudan.

The impact of Ebola on stability in Liberia and options for resuming the drawdown of the UN Mission in Liberia is expected to be the focus of Ladsous’ briefing on Liberia during consultations in mid-March.

The Council will address a number of Middle Eastern issues in March. There will be meetings on the Syria chemical weapons and humanitarian tracks. Later this week there will be a briefing in consultations on the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons by UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Angela Kane. At the end of the month Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Valerie Amos will brief (with consultations to follow) on the humanitarian situation in Syria.

There will also be the regular briefing on the Middle East, followed by consultations, by Special Coordinator Robert Serry. In addition, Council members will have their quarterly consultations on the UN Disengagement Observer Force in the Golan Heights with a briefing by Assistant Secretary-General for the Department of Peacekeeping Dmitry Titov. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Sigrid Kaag is also expected to brief in consultations on the implementation of resolution 1701, which called for the cessation of hostilities between Hezbollah and Israel in 2006.

The Chair of the 1737 Iran Sanctions Committee, Ambassador Román Oyarzun (Spain) will brief in March on the work of the committee.

Another sanctions-related issue this month is the adoption tomorrow of a resolution extending the mandate of the Panel of Experts assisting the 1718 Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Sanctions Committee.

The Council will also have a briefing by EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini that is expected to focus on strengthening the UN’s partnership with the EU.

Finally, after a break during the Chinese presidency, a wrap-up session in briefing format has been scheduled for the end of the month.

Ukraine, Boko Haram, the UN mission in the Central African Republic and non-proliferation are currently in the footnotes of the programme of work. Other ongoing, persistent conflicts that may require further attention from the Council include Mali, South Sudan and Yemen. It is probable that there will be a need for briefings, as well as possible Council outcomes, on one or more of these issues.

Sign up for What's In Blue emails