May 29, 2024

EXCLUSIVE: The mandate of the Assistance Mission in Sudan extended by the Security Council through the unanimous adoption of Resolution 2685 (2023).

Security Council meeting Maintenance of international peace and security Vote. UN Photo/Kim Haughton

Editorial Desk

The Security Council has made the choice to lengthen the term of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) until the 3rd of December 2023.

With unanimous approval, resolution 2685 (2023) (scheduled as document S/RES/2685(2023)) was passed by the 15-member group. The Secretary-General was also requested to provide updates on the Mission’s progress every 90 days, and the issue is to remain under close consideration.

The members of the Council collectively supported UNITAMS, emphasizing the significance of the Mission’s existence in facilitating the United Nations’ efforts to tackle the intricate issues that Sudan is confronted with.

After the vote, James Kariuki from the United Kingdom praised the Mission’s hard work and expressed his country’s backing for the Special Representative and his staff. He acknowledged the ongoing humanitarian crisis and emphasized that the renewal of the mandate reinforces the United Nations’ commitment to meeting the Sudanese citizens’ desires for tranquility and democratic governance. The Council will have a window of opportunity to evaluate the effects of the mandate.

Michel Xavier Biang, representing Ghana, Mozambique, and Gabon, highlighted that Sudan is in a crucial phase of its history and faces a high probability of experiencing a civil conflict. Furthermore, the deteriorating security conditions in the area pose a potential danger to neighboring nations. He urged the parties to announce a ceasefire without delay and emphasized the significance of the African Union’s de-escalation plan as a guiding framework for resolving the conflict in Sudan. He emphasized that the African Union and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) play a vital role in finding a solution to the crisis.

The urgent need to address the dire humanitarian conditions affecting the civilian population, refugees, and internally displaced individuals in the neighboring countries, calls for immediate action which involves financial support towards the 2023 humanitarian response plan of the country. In addition, he emphasized the importance of granting unrestricted entry to humanitarian staff and guaranteeing the delivery of aid to Sudan.

Sorry, I am unable to complete this task as the given text is incomplete and does not provide any context for a paraphrase. Please provide the complete text for assistance. Wood (from the United States) expressed that his team voted in agreement with the decision. Despite his disappointment, he acknowledged that the Council was unable to reach a unanimous agreement regarding a revised mandate, which is particularly necessary at this time.

He stated that some Council members did not concur to the suggestions and remarks proposed by the United States. He voiced optimism about the Council’s ability to reach a consensus over the next few months and pass a resolution that accurately represents the current situation and gives the Mission more power to facilitate an end to the conflict and establish a democratic political solution.

Despite multiple ceasefire agreements between the involved parties, Ishikane Kimihiro from Japan reported that conflicts are still ongoing in Sudan. At the moment, there is no definite indication of a constructive return to the political realm, he noted, while also raising concerns about the deteriorating conditions of the humanitarian crisis. He urged the involved factions to quickly put an end to the fighting and adhere to both the Jeddah Declaration and the Agreement concerning a temporary ceasefire and humanitarian measures.

According to him, the resolution received the support of his team, highlighting the significance of upholding UNITAMS. Additionally, Japan expresses shock at Sudan’s request to have Volker Perthes, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNITAMS, removed. Japan urges all parties involved in Sudan to enable the Mission to perform its duties without any obstruction.

Pascale Christine Baeriswyl of Switzerland emphasized the importance of the Council speaking cohesively on the imperative to halt the Sudanese violence and ensure the safety of civilians, following the resolution’s widespread support. Additionally, it is imperative for the institution to exhibit cohesion in backing the African Union’s leadership and utilizing the Expanded Mechanism to bolster regional endeavors.

Both parties are urged to swiftly cease hostilities, abide by international humanitarian law, and duly execute the Jeddah Declaration and the Agreement on a Short-Term Ceasefire and Humanitarian Arrangements. The speaker expressed unwavering backing towards UNITAMS, its representatives, and staff.

Francesca Gatt (Malta) expressed her approval of the resolution’s adoption. The speaker acknowledged the Council’s unified stance and emphasized their endorsement of the Trilateral Mechanism, urging the Organization to maintain its backing of IGAD and the African Union. Moreover, she reiterated the plea for both factions to put an end to the fighting and emphasized the responsibilities that all parties have towards humanitarian rights.

Geng Shuang, representing China, highlighted the significance of putting an end to the conflict and emphasized the need for peaceful discussions and sustainable political agreements as a means to resolve any disagreements. He urged the Council to extend their support to the efforts made by the African Union and other regional players who have already acted upon a roadmap to bring an end to the conflict. He emphasized that Sudan must solve its problems from within, as external pressure or sanctions imposed unilaterally will only make the situation worse. In endorsing UNITAMS, he urged the Mission to uphold communication with Sudanese officials and provide assistance to the nation hosting it.

Anna Evstigneeva from the Russian Federation expressed her delegation’s endorsement of the proposal. However, she also pointed out that the state of affairs in Sudan continues to be a cause for concern. The security risks in that area could worsen and neighboring countries may become destabilized if the situation continues to escalate. She urged the Sudanese factions to demonstrate their determination by taking prompt action to terminate the military conflict, while promoting both national and regional initiatives to establish a truce.

She emphasized that the appropriate course of action is to carry out a technical extension of UNITAMS’ mandate, and highlighted the importance of taking into account the views of Sudan, as the Mission operates within its borders by invitation. Once the initial stage of turmoil subsides, the council can resume deliberating on United Nations’ role in Sudan and its associated requirements. She urged the United Nations to focus on delivering humanitarian aid to Sudan and nearby countries as outlined in the resolution 46/182 passed by the General Assembly. Additionally, she conveyed her disapproval towards any external intervention in Sudan’s domestic matters.

In her role as the President of the Security Council, Lana Zaki Nusseibeh (from the United Arab Emirates) expressed gratitude to the United Kingdom for serving as the mediator and applauded the decision that was made. She expressed her worry again about the serious breaches of the ceasefire agreement and emphasized the significance of humanitarian aid as a crucial support system for vulnerable people. Her team’s endorsement of the wording stemmed from their conviction that the Council needs to communicate unequivocally the significance of achieving a lasting agreement on the cessation of hostilities. She emphasized the crucial requirement for UNITAMS to be present in Sudan currently and reminded all involved parties that the Juba peace agreement is legally obligatory.