What's In Blue

Posted Thu 1 Apr 2021

Programme of Work for April 2021

Viet Nam is the president of the Security Council in April. The Council’s work will continue to be held virtually in April, although members may consider in-person meetings later in the month if COVID-19 rates subside.

Viet Nam has chosen to hold several signature events during the month. A ministerial-level open debate on mine action will be held, featuring a briefing by UN Secretary-General António Guterres. Viet Nam’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs is expected to chair the meeting. A resolution is a possible outcome.

Viet Nam is also planning to convene a high-level open debate on strengthening cooperation between the UN and regional and sub-regional organisations, focusing on confidence-building measures and dialogue. Secretary-General Guterres, former Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and representatives of regional organisations are anticipated briefers. Viet Nam’s Prime Minister is expected to chair. A presidential statement is likely to be pursued.

There will be a ministerial-level open debate on the protection of civilian infrastructure. Secretary-General Guterres may brief. Other briefers are expected to include ICRC President Peter Maurer and a representative of the International Peace Institute. Viet Nam’s Minister of Foreign Affairs is expected to chair. A resolution is a potential outcome.

The annual open debate on conflict-related sexual violence is planned for April. Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict Pramila Patten is the anticipated briefer. Representatives of civil society are also likely to participate.

This month the Council is expected to adopt a resolution renewing the mandate of the 1540 Committee, which aims to address the concern that non-state actors might use weapons of mass destruction for terrorist purposes.

Several meetings on African issues are on the programme this month. The Council is scheduled to renew the measures related to the illicit export of petroleum from Libya and the mandate of the Panel of Experts assisting the 1970 Libya Sanctions Committee.

There will also be the quarterly briefing on Mali, which will be followed by consultations. Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix is expected to brief.

A briefing, followed by consultations, is scheduled on the Great Lakes region. During the meeting, Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Region Huang Xia is expected to brief on the implementation of the 2013 Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework (PSC Framework) for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and on other recent developments in the region.

Council members will receive a briefing in consultations in April on the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO), likely from Collin Stewart, the Special Representative for Western Sahara and head of MINURSO.

The UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) will also be on the programme. Members expect to receive a briefing on the Secretary-General’s report on the implementation of the mandate of the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA). Consultations are scheduled to follow.

Regarding the Middle East, there will be the monthly meetings on the political, humanitarian and chemical weapons tracks in Syria.

The Security Council is expected to hold its monthly briefing, followed by consultations, on Yemen with Special Envoy Martin Griffiths, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock, and General Abhijit Guha, who heads the UN Mission to support the Hodeidah Agreement (UNMHA).

The quarterly open debate on “The situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question” is scheduled this month. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland is the anticipated briefer.

The Council is expected to hold its first briefing this year on the situation in Kosovo, the one European issue on the programme in April. The Special Representative and head of the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), Zahir Tanin, will brief on recent developments and the latest report by the Secretary-General.

With regard to the Americas, the Council will receive a briefing from Special Representative and head of the UN Verification Mission in Colombia Carlos Ruiz Massieu on recent developments and the Secretary-General’s latest 90-day report on the mission. Consultations are scheduled to follow the briefing. The Council may also adopt a resolution expanding the mandate of the verification mission to include monitoring compliance with the sentences handed down by the Special Jurisdiction for Peace.