The Security Council decided to extend the mandate of the United Nations peace operation in Western Sahara for one year today, with the voting results announced by videoconference, in accordance with the temporary silence procedure* adopted for the COVID-19 pandemic.
Adopting resolution 2548 (2020) by 13 votes in favour to none against, with 2 abstentions (Russian Federation, South Africa), the Council extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) until 31 October 2021. It called upon the parties to the dispute over that territory to resume negotiations without preconditions and in good faith.
The Council also rejected a second draft resolution, on the agenda item “Women, peace and security”.
By the MINURSO text, the Council emphasized the need for a realistic, practicable and enduring solution to the Western Sahara question based on compromise, as well as the importance of aligning the Mission’s strategic focus and orienting United Nations resources to that end.
Expressing its full support for the ongoing efforts of the Secretary-General and his incoming Personal Envoy to sustain the renewed negotiations process, the Council noted the intention of the former Personal Envoy to invite Morocco, the Frente Polisario (Popular Front for the Liberation of Saguia el-Hamra and Rio de Oro), Algeria and Mauritania to meet again in the same format. It welcomed the commitment of those parties to remain engaged throughout the process in order to ensure a successful outcome.
In calling for the resumption of negotiations, the Council asked the parties to take into account the efforts made since 2006, as well as subsequent developments, with a view to achieving a just, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution that provides for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara. It invited Member States to lend appropriate assistance to such talks.
Reaffirming the need to fully respect military agreements previously reached with MINURSO regarding a ceasefire, the Council further called upon the parties to adhere to those agreements, implement their commitments to the former Personal Envoy and refrain from any actions that could undermine negotiations or further destabilize the situation in Western Sahara.
By other terms of the resolution, the Council requested that the Secretary-General provide regular briefings on the status of negotiations during the mandate period; apply his framework for comprehensive and integrated peacekeeping performance policies to MINURSO; and increase the number of women engaged in the Mission’s work, as well as their meaningful participation.
Vassily Nebenzia (Russian Federation), Council President for October, announced the silence-procedure voting results for the draft resolution on the agenda item “Women, peace and security”, noting that the text, having received 5 votes in favour (China, Indonesia, Russia, South Africa, Viet Nam) to none against, with 10 abstentions, failed to garner enough affirmative votes and was rejected.
That text would have had the Council note with deep concern persisting barriers to the full implementation of resolution 1325 (2000) and subsequent “women, peace and security” resolutions. It would have urged Member States to ensure and promote “the full, equal and meaningful participation of women in all stages of peace processes” and remain committed to “increasing the number of civilian and uniformed women in peacekeeping at all levels and in key positions”.
Further, the text it would have had the Council urge Member States to facilitate women’s full, equal and meaningful inclusion and participation both in negotiating delegations and in mechanisms established to implement and monitor agreements.
The text, which would also have had the Council recognize the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, was the outcome of the Council’s open debate on the “Women, peace and security” agenda, convened on Thursday by the Russian Federation to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the landmark resolution 1325 (2000).
* Security Council resolutions are currently adopted through a written procedure vote under temporary, extraordinary and provisional measures implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as set out in a letter (document S/2020/253) by its President for March (China).
“I’m clear: if human rights laws get in the way of tackling extremism and terrorism, we will change those laws to keep British people safe. After the London Bridge attack, I said “enough is enough”, and that things need to change to tackle the threat we face. And tonight I set out what that means: longer prison sentences for people convicted of terrorist offences; deporting foreign terror suspects back to their own countries; restricting the freedom and movements of terrorist suspects when we have evidence to know they present a threat, but not enough to prosecute them in court” – Theresa May (06.06.2017 – at a rally at Slough, United Kingdom).
That Prime Minister Theresa May are obliged to amend her laws and ask for provisions to change them through Parliament. She is fine to do so and follow the procedures of the state, to make the most draconian laws able. As the Tories already before the grand-elections started to unleash laws of old, that we’re in the fashion of King Henry IV. These laws was amend and gives more powers to the government over the Parliament. So the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom has already shown force and will of taking the powers in their hands.
Theresa May isn’t the first to use terrorism to control and to suspend laws to gain more power. That is usually a sign of oppressive behavior and of the Orwellian society. Clearly, a human being like May should consider her words. If not she really wants to show that she can act so much, that she wants to take away freedom and liberties from her own citizens. Instead of believing in the set freedoms and provisions done by the United Nations Charter and ratified legal framework that the United Kingdom must have.
Still, there are enough signs that she doesn’t need to do so, as the provisions that are in place has not and will not overpower a sovereign, neither will it create interference of state control in troubling time. That is if she really cares about the liberties and the just societies the United Nations legal framework put in place.
OHCHR own Fact Sheet on Human Rights and Terrorism:
“International and regional human rights law makes clear that States have both a right and a duty to protect individuals under their jurisdiction from terrorist attacks. This stems from the general duty of States to protect individuals under their jurisdiction against interference in the enjoyment of human rights. More specifically, this duty is recognized as part of States’ obligations to ensure respect for the right to life and the right to security” OHCHR, P: 8, 2008).
“These challenges are not insurmountable. States can effectively meet their obligations under international law by using the flexibilities built into the international human rights law framework. Human rights law allows for limitations on certain rights and, in a very limited set of exceptional circumstances, for derogations from certain human rights provisions. These two types of restrictions are specifically conceived to provide States with the necessary flexibility to deal with exceptional circumstances, while at the same time—provided a number of conditions are fulfilled—complying with their obligations under international human rights law” (OHCHR, P: 23, 2008).
Than it is the United Nation Security Council own definition:
“Security Council Resolution 1963 (2010) reiterates that effective counter-terrorism measures and respect for human rights are complementary and mutually reinforcing, and are an essential part of a successful counter-terrorism effort, and it notes the importance of respect for the rule of law so as to effectively combat terrorism. Resolution 1963 (2010) “thus encourages CTED to further develop its activities in this area, to ensure that all human rights issues relevant to the implementation of resolutions 1373 (2001) and 1624 (2005) are addressed consistently and even-handedly including, as appropriate, on country visits that are organized with the consent of the visited member State”.
It is really serious when the United Nations and the OHCHR are saying there no issues between respecting the Human Rights Law legal framework and countering terrorism. Even if the resolutions and legal framework are critical and makes the state more bound to respect the terrorists. This still, doesn’t stop them from having provisions and having strict security in the Member States. The Member State themselves are putting forward rule of law and also has to incriminate inside their territory. However, the security is for the reason of the liberty and freedom of all citizens and all rights to all human beings. It is strange that Prime Minister Theresa May wants to suspend it, while the UNSC and OHCHR are saying it is possible.
That she has to go this far to gain support. Seems more like she could join Nigel Farage and Paul Nuttal, than following the Conservative leadership of the past. These words would not have come from David Cameron or anyone of his kind. This shows how fragile and how hell-bent is on winning this election by any means. That she has to promise on the final leap to suspend rule of law and take away basic human rigths. As the Police Service and Security Organization in our time cannot be able fight terrorism by the means and the values, that most of Europe see as natural. That the Police and Army get stronger laws and more draconian ones to make sure the United Kingdom can oppress and silence freedoms. Instead of fighting it through the means of strengthening the Police and the Intelligence, as the UK has one of the most sophisticated Security Organization in the world. It should have the capacity and if the Conservative had been serious about it, they would have fixed the issue during the last 8 years. Peace.
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) – ‘Human Rights, Terrorism and Counter-terrorism – Fact Sheet No. 32’ (July 2008)
United Nation Security Council – ‘PROTECTING HUMAN RIGHTS WHILE COUNTERING TERRORISM’ (10.09.2015) link: http://www.un.org/en/sc/ctc/rights.html
There aren’t only murders and mysteries on the telly, its real life and not fiction as the Syrian civil war continues rapidly without whomever force and whomever ally around Aleppo or other check-points where the Presidents force, rebels or ISIS are shooting. The bullets don’t have names, but the men and woman on the side-line and at the battle who dies does; the men and woman who loses their life for themselves or a Nobel-cause.
As much as there are forces battling inside the Iraq nation as Government Forces are attacking together with American soldiers ISIS stronghold around Mosul. There are continued fighting inside of Afghanistan. Still battles between civilians and the Indian Army inside the Kashmir state that has issues there and on the Pakistan side of Kashmir. The long battle for freedom or justice, as the Kurds are battling for in Syria, Turkey and in Iraq; being the minority in the middle of the civil war in Syria and Iraq.
That is just some places, as the deteriorating state of affairs are attacking all sort of freedoms inside Ethiopia, as the army and Aghazi squad are killing and harassing the people’s in Amhara and Oromia states. Together with the arrests of bloggers, silencing media outlets, and detaining demonstrators, burning the homes of people and inflicting violence on the citizens. This state of emergency is used as a useful tool to oppress, silence and make sure the violence and killings doesn’t get out; while the Central Government works to find reasons and solutions to ways of total control of minds and bodies in the states of demonstrations against the Addis Ababa regime.
In Burundi the central government are using the Police and army, together with the Imbonerakure that are detaining, harassing, killing and torturing civilians, silencing the opposition and the ones not loyal to the President Pierre Nkurunziza narrative of keeping power by any means. The Burundian Government has claimed that the Rwandan Government has created armies and guerrillas that wished for a coup d’état against the Nkurunziza regime. Therefore the fleeing civilians are in the wind as the Rwandan government has been wonder for a spell, if they would banish the Burundian refugees a place in the country.
While in the Democratic Republic of Congo, several guerrillas are still running wild, burning and killing villagers in the States of North and South Kivu, Katanga and so on. Where the foreign based groups that have been started in Rwanda and Uganda, continues to battle the locals for the valuable minerals; as even today a former M23 Commander Sultani Makenga who been in Uganda has crossed with a militarized group, surely from Kisoro as before to cause more havoc in the Kivu’s. The ADF-NALU, Mayi-Mayi and others doesn’t create enough death and crimes against humanity already, as the MONUSCO and FARDC haven’t the ability or will to silence them.
In South Sudan, the internal battle that started in July 2016, the resurgence of skirmishes between the SPLA/M and the SPLM/A-IO who are the TGNU and the Opposition party, which is the armies for President Salva Kiir and his former First Vice-President Riek Machar. That has since July battled each other with forces, in Western Bahr El Ghazal State, Equatoria State and Upper Nile State. There been fighting between the two in other states, but just show how big and powerful the forces are. The South Sudanese civilians are the losers who flees to Ethiopia, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo, even in Congo because the Opposition we’re there has been asked to leave to other destinations. Therefore the internal power-struggle those fear of genocide, as still creating implications inside other nations.
In Somalia the Al-Shabab, the different state continues to have infighting together with the AMISOM mission. The running battles for land between Galdumug Interim Administration and the Puntland Government inside the Federal Republic of Somalia. Doesn’t really help for a peaceful session and making dialogue in the war-torn nation where Piracy and Khat been the ways of securing funds for ammunition and AKs, not for building a state and security.
Eritrea is closed and the continuation of the flow of refugees, as the internal controlling central government that forces the freedoms and liberties, as the men and woman does what they can to even enter Ethiopia, where they are badly treated. Eritrean reports are staggering as they are even supporting internal guerrillas in Ethiopia and Djibouti to unsettle their neighbours.
There are wars and running battles between government forces and rebels in Central African Republic, Mali, Mozambique and so on. This is happening in silence and without little flash, even as the ones are guerrillas like Boko Haram that are going in between Nigeria and Cameroon, to stop the Government from functioning and spreading fear of locals.
What is worrying how these actions continues, and how there are other I could mention, the issues in Libya, the Algerian complex and the Western Sahara colony of the Kingdom of Morocco.
The death that dies in silence, in the midst of homes, villages where their families have been living for decades, while big-men fight like two elephants; the grass get hurt, but the big-men be fine. The same is with all of these civil wars, the civilians are dying, the societies are deteriorating, the central government are controlled by little amount of people instead of procedure and rule of law.
The worry is how it becomes pro-longed, how the innocent dies and the power-hungry survive and the lucky get refugee somewhere else in uncertainty, like for how long can they stay, as been seen with the Kenyan Government work to get rid of Somali refugees in Dadaab Refugee camp during this calendar year, while the Somalian Federation if far from peaceful. Even as the Ethiopian troops has went home again surely to use their knowledge to chop heads in Amhara and Oromia. That is what they do now, they just doesn’t want people to know about it.
We shouldn’t allow this actions to happen, this killings, this violence and the silence of freedom, liberty and justice to our fellow peers, we should act upon it, question our power-to-be and the men who rules over these armies, the ones creating the havoc and the ones who are behind the crimes against humanity. Those are the ones that earning money on the wars and the ones that doesn’t want the words on the acts; those are the worst ones in it all as they are accomplices to destruction of lives and societies as we speak. Peace.
Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Western Sahara.
NEW YORK, United States of America, August 29, 2016 – The Secretary-General is deeply concerned over the tense situation that has developed in the narrow Buffer Strip in southwestern Western Sahara between the Moroccan berm and the Mauritanian border as a result of changes in the status quo and the introduction of armed units from Morocco and the Polisario in close proximity to each other.
The Secretary-General calls on both parties to suspend any action that alters that status quo and to withdraw all armed elements so as to prevent any further escalation and permit MINURSO to hold discussions with both parties on the situation. The Secretary-General stresses the importance for both parties to adhere to their obligations as per the Military Agreement number 1, and the need to respect the letter and the spirit of the ceasefire agreement.