Category Archives: Statements from the UN Security Council

Security Council Press Statement on ISIL’s Violent Seizure of Palmyra, Syria – 22 May 2015

The members of the Security Council strongly condemned the ongoing barbaric terrorist acts by ISIL in Syria, including its violent takeover of Palmyra.

The members of the Security Council expressed deep concern for the thousands of Palmyra residents inside the city, as well as for those displaced as a result of ISIL’s [Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant] (Da’esh) advance.  The members of the Security Council call for the safe passage of civilians fleeing the violence, and reaffirms that the primary responsibility to protect its populations lies with the Syrian authorities. The members of the Security Council stated their grave concern for the protection of the World Heritage site of Palmyra and the systematic campaign of destruction of cultural heritage in Iraq and Syria.

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms ISIL’s terrorist acts, which reportedly include beheadings and killings.  They expressed concern for the women and children in Palmyra, noting ISIL’s pattern of abducting, exploiting, and abusing women and children elsewhere, including rape, sexual abuse, forced marriage, and forced child recruitment committed by ISIL.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their condemnation of the destruction of cultural heritage in Iraq and Syria, particularly by ISIL, including targeted destruction of religious sites and objects, and noted with concern that ISIL and other individuals, groups, undertakings and entities associated with Al-Qaida are generating income from engaging directly or indirectly in the looting and smuggling of cultural heritage items from archaeological sites, museums, libraries, archives, and other sites in Syria and Iraq, which is being used to support their recruitment efforts and to strengthen their operational capability to organize and carry out terrorist attacks.  The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators of these acts to justice.

The members of the Security Council stressed again that ISIL must be defeated and that the intolerance, violence, and hatred it espouses must be stamped out.  The members of the Council further emphasized that such continued acts of barbarism perpetrated by ISIL do not intimidate them, but rather stiffen their resolve and stressed that there has to be a common effort amongst Governments and institutions, including those in the region most affected, to counter ISIL, as the Council resolved in United Nations Security Council resolutions 2170 (2014) and 2199 (2015), and underscored the need for the full and immediate implementation of these resolutions by all Member States. They reminded States that they must ensure that measures taken to combat terrorism comply with all their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights, refugee, and humanitarian law.

The members of the Security Council voiced their strong support for UNESCO Director-General Bokova’s efforts to address the destruction and looting of cultural heritage, including through UNESCO’s efforts to assist in the implementation of relevant provisions of UN Security Council Resolution 2199.

22 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on Terrorist Attack in Saudi Arabia – 22 May 2015

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attack claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Daesh) at a mosque in Qatif, Saudi Arabia on 22 May 2015, resulting in the death of at least 21 people.

The members of the Security Council expressed their deep sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims of this heinous act and to the Government of Saudi Arabia.

The members of the Security Council stressed again that ISIL must be defeated and that the intolerance, violence and hatred it espouses must be stamped out.  The members of the Council further emphasized that such continued acts of barbarism perpetrated by ISIL do not intimidate them, but rather stiffen their resolve that there has to be a common effort amongst Governments and institutions, including those in the region most affected, to counter ISIL, groups that have pledged allegiance to ISIL, Ansar Al Shari’a entities, and all other individuals, groups, undertakings and entities associated with Al-Qaida, as the Council resolved in United Nations Security Council resolutions 2170 (2014), 2199 (2015) and 2214 (2015).

The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Saudi authorities in this regard.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed.

The members of the Security Council reminded States that they must ensure that measures taken to combat terrorism comply with all their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law.

22 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on Burundi – 24 May 2015

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the killing of Mr. Zedi Feruzi, leader of the opposition Union pour la paix et le développement (UPD) Zigamibanga party in Burundi, and his bodyguard, on 23 May 2015 in Bujumbura. The members of the Security Council also condemned the grenade attack in Bujumbura’s central market on 22 May 2015 that left two dead and many others injured.

The Security Council expressed their deepest condolences to the families of those killed and wished a speedy recovery to the injured. They urged the Burundian authorities to swiftly bring the perpetrators of these crimes to justice.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their call on all Burundian stakeholders to demonstrate their sense of responsibility and exercise calm and restraint in the interest of peace and reconciliation in Burundi. They called on the Burundian authorities to take concrete steps to prevent further violence, whilst respecting fundamental freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly.

The members of the Security Council called on all Burundian stakeholders to pursue the consultative political dialogue facilitated by the Special Envoy for the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes region, Mr Said Djinnit, and representatives of the African Union, the East African Community, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, to create an environment conducive to peaceful, credible and inclusive elections in Burundi, in the spirit of the Arusha Agreements.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their intent to respond to violent acts which threaten peace and security in Burundi.

Security Council Press Statement on the Central African Republic – 15 May 2015

The members of the Security Council welcomed the holding in Bangui, from 4 to 11 May 2015, of the National Forum on reconciliation, and the inclusive grassroots level consultations that gathered views of local citizens in advance. They welcomed the inclusive and comprehensive manner in which this Forum was held, in particular by ensuring the full effective and equal participation of women.

The members of the Security Council commended the adoption of the Republican Pact for Peace, National Reconciliation and Reconstruction including, inter alia, commitments for a swift presidential and legislative electoral process, decentralisation and a reinforced judiciary. They further commended the signature of an agreement on the principles for disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, as well as an agreement by which armed groups committed to end the recruitment of child soldiers and liberate all children associated with the conflict from their ranks.

In this regard, the members of the Security Council welcomed the release of more than 300 children, including several under 12 years old, by anti-Balaka and the ex-Seleka armed group.

The members of the Security Council congratulated the people of the Central African Republic, the Transitional Authorities, and the armed groups who participated as signatories of these critical agreements. They called on all armed groups to follow through on these commitments without delay.

The members of the Security reiterated their support to the Transitional Authorities under the leadership of Catherine Samba-Panza as Transitional Head of State and strongly condemned the attempt by some armed elements to use violence, including directed against MINUSCA peacekeepers, at the closing of the Bangui Forum.

The members of the Security Council urged the Transitional Authorities, with the support of the United Nations and the international community, to implement the Forum’s recommendations without delay.

The members of the Security Council urged, in particular, the Transitional Authorities, as well as the National Elections Authority (NEA), in accordance with the transitional national charter and the “Pacte Républicain” adopted at the Bangui Forum, to  to organize  as a matter of urgency and as soon as possible and over the whole territory, the Constitutional referendum and the free, fair, transparent and inclusive presidential and legislative elections currently scheduled to take place by August 2015, ensuring the full and effective participation of women, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and CAR refugees, the voluntary return of whom should be an important objective.

The members of the Security Council called on Member States, international and regional organizations to urgently provide support to the Transitional Authorities for the conduct of the transition and subsequent reforms, including voluntary contributions for the payment of salaries and other needs for the restoration of the State authority over the whole territory, as well as for the holding of elections through the UN trust fund, for the upcoming disarmament, demobilization, rehabilitation and reintegration (DDR/R) and security sector reform (SSR) programmes and for the restoration of the judiciary and the criminal justice system including the Special Criminal Court.

They called on the UN Secretariat and the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the CAR (MINUSCA) to swiftly begin implementation of a comprehensive and credible DDR program as a matter of priority to consolidate security gains ahead of the upcoming elections.

The members of the Security Council emphasized that the continued role of the region, including the Mediator and the Chair of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), as well as the African Union, and the United Nations as members of the mediation, will be critical for the promotion of lasting peace and stability in the Central African Republic, and called upon the international community to continue to support the people and Transitional Authorities of the Central African Republic.

15 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on the Situation in Burundi – 15 May 2015

The Members of the Security Council expressed their serious concern with the ongoing tensions and unrest in Burundi and stressed the urgent need for dialogue and reconciliation among all Burundians to resolve the current crisis in a peaceful, transparent and inclusive manner. 

The Members of the Security Council called on all parties to exercise restraint, not to resort to violence or retaliatory attacks, to settle disputes peacefully and to prioritize Burundi’s peace and stability above all else and in the best interests of the nation.

The Members of the Security Council condemned the violent unrest in Burundi and specifically condemned those who facilitate violence of any kind. They called on the Burundian authorities to address the crisis, whilst respecting fundamental freedoms and the principles of fair trials and due process.

The Members of the Security Council called for the swift return of the rule of law and the establishment of a genuine dialogue between all Burundians to create the necessary conditions for the holding of peaceful, transparent, inclusive and credible elections in the spirit of the Arusha Agreements, including fundamental freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly.

The Members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to the efforts of the UN and the Special Envoy Said Djinnit, the African Union, the East African Community and the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region. 

The Members of the Security Council expressed their intent to respond to violent acts which threaten peace and security in Burundi. 

The Members of the Security Council expressed the intention to remain seized of the matter as long as needed. 

15 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on Yemen – 12 May 2015

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their strong commitment to the unity, sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of Yemen, and its commitment to stand by the people of Yemen.

The members of the Security Council expressed their grave concern that the demands in resolution 2216 (2015) are unmet, and demanded the full implementation of it.

The members of the Security Council welcomed the appointment of Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed as Special Envoy for Yemen, reiterated their full support for the efforts of the United Nations and the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General on Yemen, and further reiterated their request of the Secretary-General to intensify his good offices role in order to enable a resumption of a peaceful, inclusive, orderly, and Yemeni-led political transition process that meets the legitimate demands and aspirations of the Yemeni people.

The members of the Security Council called on the Secretary-General to convene a conference of all Yemeni stakeholders, with the intention of brokering a consensus-based political solution to Yemen’s crisis in accordance with the Gulf Cooperation Council Initiative and its Implementation Mechanism, the outcomes of the comprehensive National Dialogue conference, and relevant Security Council resolutions.  The members of the Security Council emphasized that the UN-brokered inclusive political dialogue must be a Yemeni-led process.

The members of the Security Council called on all Yemeni parties to attend these talks under the auspices of the United Nations and engage without preconditions and in good faith, including by resolving their differences through dialogue and consultation, rejecting acts of violence to achieve political goals, and refraining from provocation and all unilateral actions to undermine the political transition.

The members of the Security Council welcomed any efforts aimed at supporting the political transition in Yemen and that complemented and supported the UN-brokered negotiations and, in this context, noted the announced conference in Riyadh on 17 May 2015.

The members of the Security Council expressed their grave concern about the severe humanitarian consequences of the continued violence in Yemen.  In this regard, they welcomed the initiative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Government of Yemen to implement a five-day humanitarian pause, and they called on all parties to respect a humanitarian pause.  The members of the Security Council emphasized that for the humanitarian pause to be successful; all parties will need to transparently and reliably suspend military operations.  During a humanitarian pause, the members of the Security Council also urged all parties to allow for the entry and delivery of essential relief items to the civilian population, including urgently needed food, medicine, and fuel, and to facilitate the field activities of humanitarian agencies, in coordination with the Government of Yemen.  The members of the Security Council urged all parties to facilitate the urgent delivery of humanitarian assistance, as well as rapid, safe and unhindered access for humanitarian actors to reach people in need of humanitarian assistance, including medical assistance.

The members of the Security Council called upon all sides to comply with international humanitarian law, including taking all feasible precautions to minimize harm to civilians, and to urgently work with the United Nations and humanitarian aid organizations to get assistance to those in need.

New York, 12 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on MONUSCO peacekeepers – 6 May 2015

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the attack against United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) peacekeepers in Beni territory on 5 May 2015, in which two Tanzanian peacekeepers were killed and others injured.

The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences to the families of the peacekeepers killed, as well as to the Government and people of Tanzania, and to MONUSCO. The members of the Security Council also wished a speedy recovery to those injured.

The members of the Security Council called on the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo to swiftly investigate this attack and bring the perpetrators to justice and stressed that those responsible for the attack shall be held accountable. The members of the Security Council underlined that attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the DRC and MONUSCO to implement their mandate.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their deep concern regarding the security crisis in eastern DRC due to ongoing destabilizing activities of foreign and domestic armed groups.

6 May 2015

Security Council Press Statement on Mali – 1 May 2015

The members of the Security Council expressed their deep concern at the outbreak of violence that has occurred in Mali since 27 April 2015, which threatens to undermine the peace process, and demanded that the hostilities cease immediately.

The members of the Security Council urged the parties to demonstrate their commitment to the peace process and adhere to their obligations under the cease fire agreement of 23 May 2014, and the declarations of cessation of hostilities of 24 July 2014 and 19 February 2015.

The members of the Security Council stressed that the attacks perpetrated since 27 April 2015, notably in Ménaka, Goundam and Léré, violate the ceasefire. The members of the Security Council recalled the statement by the President of the Security Council of 6 February 2015 (S/PRST/2015/5) as well as their press statement of 10 April 2015, in which the Security Council expressed its readiness to consider targeted sanctions against those who resume hostilities and violate the ceasefire. In this regard, the members of the Security Council expressed their intention to evaluate next steps in light of these violations and events on the ground.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Mali, Mr Mongi Hamdi, and to the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), to engage with all parties to de-escalate tensions and continue dialogue.

The members of the Security Council urged the parties, including the armed groups of the Coordination, to remain committed to the peace process in which they engaged. The members of the Security Council encouraged the parties to continue to engage constructively with sustained political will and in good faith, supported by the members of the international mediation team, with the view to sign the draft Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali on 15 May 2015 in Bamako. The members of the Security Council expressed their full support to the members of the international mediation team for their efforts to support the parties in this regard.

1 May 2015