What's In Blue

Posted Mon 1 Nov 2021

Programme of Work for November 2021

Mexico is the president of the Security Council in November. The Council adopted its provisional programme of work for the month earlier today (1 November).

All meetings are expected to be held in person this month. Mexico has indicated that all open debates this month will allow in-person participation from the wider UN membership.

Mexico has chosen to convene three signature events during its presidency. There will be a high-level open debate on “Exclusion, inequality and conflicts” under the agenda item “Maintenance of international peace and security”. Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is expected to chair the meeting. Secretary-General António Guterres and a civil society representative are the anticipated briefers. A presidential statement is a possible outcome.

Mexico will also organise a high-level open debate on the theme “Peace and security through preventive diplomacy: A common agenda to all UN principal organs” under the agenda item “Maintenance of international peace and security”. The expected briefers are Secretary-General António Guterres; Abdulla Shahid, President of the General Assembly; Collen Vixen Kelapile, President of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC); and Joan E. Donoghue, President of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). A presidential statement is a possible outcome.

The third signature event in November will be an open debate on Small Arms and Light Weapons. Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard is expected to chair the meeting. Director of the UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) Robin Geiss and a civil society representative are the anticipated briefers.

The annual briefing of UN police commissioners will also take place in November. Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix, UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) Police Commissioner Violet Lusala, and UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) Police Commissioner Patricia Boughani are expected to brief. The Mexican presidency intends to focus this briefing on women, peace and security (WPS) issues as part of the WPS presidency trio of Ireland, Kenya and Mexico in September, October and November, respectively.

In November, the Council will hold its semi-annual debate on Bosnia and Herzegovina. Council members also expect to vote on a draft resolution reauthorising the EU-led multinational stabilisation force (EUFOR ALTHEA) prior to its 5 November expiry.

The Security Council plans to address several African issues this month. It expects to renew the mandates of the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) and the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA). A meeting with MINUSCA troop-contributing countries is also planned for November; Special Representative for the Central African Republic and head of MINUSCA Mankeur Ndiaye is the anticipated briefer.

On Somalia, the Council is scheduled to vote on a draft resolution renewing several elements of the 751 Somalia sanctions regime, which are due to expire on 15 November. There will also be a briefing, followed by consultations, on recent developments in the country and the implementation of the mandates of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia and the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Special Representative for Somalia and head of UNSOM James Swan is expected to brief. AU Special Representative of the Chairperson of the AU Commission (SRCC) for Somalia and head of AMISOM Francisco Madeira and a civil society representative may also brief.

The Council will also convene for its biannual briefing, followed by consultations, on the Joint Force of the Group of Five for the Sahel (FC-G5S). Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix is expected to brief. Additional briefers may include a representative of Chad (who will brief on behalf of the G5-Sahel countries) and representatives from the AU and EU.

There will be a briefing, followed by consultations, on the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL). ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan will also provide the court’s semi-annual briefing concerning cases in Libya.

Several Middle Eastern issues are on the programme of work this month. The Council will hold its monthly meetings on the political, humanitarian and chemical weapons tracks in Syria. High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Izumi Nakamitsu will brief on the chemical weapons file, while Special Envoy Geir O. Pedersen and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Martin Griffiths are expected to brief on political and humanitarian issues, respectively.

Council members will also convene for consultations on Yemen. Special Envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg and Acting Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Ramesh Rajasingham are expected to brief.

The Council will hold a briefing, followed by consultations, on Iraq. Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert will brief on the most recent developments and the Secretary-General’s two upcoming reports concerning UNAMI and missing Kuwaiti property and missing third party and Kuwaiti nationals, which are due in November. A civil society representative may also brief.

Council members also expect to receive a briefing in consultations on the Secretary-General’s report on the implementation of resolution 1701, due on 16 November. Adopted in 2006, resolution 1701 called for a cessation of hostilities between the Shi’a militant group Hezbollah and Israel. The anticipated briefers are Special Coordinator for Lebanon Joanna Wronecka, Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix, and UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Stefano Del Col.

There will also be the monthly meeting on “The Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question”. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland is expected to brief. A civil society representative may also brief.

Two Asian issues will be discussed in November. There will be a briefing, followed by consultations, on Afghanistan. Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) Deborah Lyons is expected to brief. A civil society representative is also expected to brief the Council.

In addition, the Chair of the 1718 Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) Sanctions Committee, Ambassador Mona Juul (Norway), is expected to brief Council members in consultations on the 90-day report regarding the committee’s work.

Council members will convene for a private meeting to receive a briefing from ICJ President Joan E. Donoghue. The Security Council and the General Assembly will also vote to fill a vacancy on the ICJ this month.

The 15 current Council members and the incoming five (Albania, Brazil, Gabon, Ghana, and the United Arab Emirates) will participate in the annual “Hitting the Ground Running” workshop organised by Finland.

Council members will also be closely following developments related to Sudan, the Tigray region of Ethiopia and Myanmar. They may choose to convene meetings on these and other issues.