|For information only - not an official document.|
|Press Release No: UNIS/SC/1216|
|Release Date: 19 April 2000|
| Security Council Votes to Tighten Sanctions against UNITA,
Unanimously Adopting Resolution 1295 (2000)
NEW YORK, 18 April (UN Headquarters) -- Acting under the enforcement provisions of the Charter (Chapter VII), the Security Council this afternoon unanimously voted to tighten its sanctions against the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) and undertook to consider additional measures -- use of armed force not included -- to make them more effective.
By the terms of resolution 1295 (2000), the Council asked the Secretary-General to establish a monitoring mechanism which would be composed of five experts, for a period of six months from its entry into operation. Their tasks would be to collect relevant information, investigate relevant leads and verify information provided by all sources concerning violations of the Council’s three previous sanctions resolutions on UNITA. The experts would report periodically to the Sanctions Committee on Angola, including providing a written report by 18 October. The Council called upon States to cooperate with the experts in the discharge of their mandate.
The Council expressed its intention to review the implementation of its three previous resolutions on UNITA on the basis of information provided, inter alia, by the Panel of Experts, by States, and by the monitoring mechanism established by the present resolution. It also expressed its readiness, on the basis of the results of the review, to consider appropriate action in accordance with the Charter against States it determined to have violated the measures contained in those resolutions. It set a deadline of 18 November for an initial decision on the subject.
Further, the Council undertook to consider by that date the application of additional measures against UNITA under Article 41 of the Charter, and the development of additional tools to render the existing measures imposed against the party more effective.
(Article 41 covers measures -- not involving the use of armed force -- which the Security Council may decide to employ to give effect to its decisions, and may call upon Member States to apply them. The measures may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.)
The Council welcomed the decision of several States referred to in the report of the Panel of Experts to establish interdepartmental commissions and other mechanisms to investigate the allegations contained in the report. It invited those States to keep the Committee informed of the results of such investigations. It took note of the information provided to the Council by States in response to the conclusions and recommendations of the Panel of Experts, and asked its Sanctions Committee on Angola to consider fully all such information.
In a section of the resolution covering trade in arms, the Council encouraged all States to exercise diligence in order to prevent the diversion or trans-shipment of weapons to unauthorized end-users or unauthorized destinations, where such diversion or trans-shipment risked resulting in the violation of the measures contained in its resolution 864 (1993). States should also require end-use documentation or equivalent measures before exports from their territories were allowed. The Council further encouraged all States to ensure effective monitoring and regulation in the export of weapons, including by private arms brokers, where they did not already do so.
Furthermore, the Council invited States to consider the proposal to convene one or more conferences of representatives of countries that were manufacturers and, in particular, exporters of weapons for the purpose of developing proposals to stem the illicit flow of arms into Angola. It called for the provision of the necessary financial support for such conferences by States, and urged that representatives of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries be invited to those conferences.
A section of the resolution dealing with trade in petroleum and petroleum products encouraged the convening of a conference of experts to devise a regime for curbing their illegal supply into UNITA-controlled areas, including physical inspection as well as the broader monitoring of petroleum supply in those areas. It further encouraged any such conference to focus on the role and capacity of the SADC in the implementation of such a regime. The Council invites the SADC to consider the establishment of monitoring activities in the border areas adjacent to Angola, for the purpose of reducing opportunities for the smuggling of petroleum and petroleum products into areas under the control of UNITA.
The UNITA was further invited to take the lead in establishing an information exchange mechanism involving petroleum companies and governments to facilitate the flow of information regarding possible illegal diversions of fuel to UNITA. The SADC was further invited to take the lead in carrying out chemical analysis of fuel samples obtained from petroleum suppliers in the SADC region and, using the results, to create a database for the purpose of determining the sources of fuel obtained or captured from UNITA.
The Security Council called upon the Government of Angola to implement additional internal controls and inspection procedures with respect to the distribution of petroleum and petroleum products, for the purpose of enhancing the effectiveness of the measures contained in Council resolution 864 (1993). The
The Council called upon all States to enforce strictly safety and control regulations relating to the transportation by air of fuel and other hazardous commodities, particularly in the area around Angola.
With regard to provisions on trade in diamonds, the Council welcomed a proposal that a meeting of experts be convened to devise a system of controls to facilitate the implementation of the measures in its resolution 1173 (1998), including arrangements that would allow for increased transparency and accountability in the control of diamonds from their point of origin to the bourses. It emphasized that every effort should be made to avoid inflicting collateral damage on the legitimate diamond trade. It welcomed the intention of South Africa to host a relevant conference this year.
With regard to funds and financial measures, the Council encouraged States to convene a conference of experts to explore possibilities for strengthening the implementation of the financial measures imposed against UNITA, contained in resolution 1173 (1998). It called upon all States to work with financial institutions on their territory to develop procedures to facilitate the identification of funds and financial assets that may be subject to the measures contained in resolution 1173 (1998) and the freezing of such assets.
Among the provisions concerning travel and representation, the Council emphasized the importance of States acting to prevent the circumvention on or from their territory of the measures contained in the relevant Council resolutions since 1993, and invited them to review the status of UNITA officials and representatives, as well as all adult members of their families, designated by the Committee and believed to be residing on their territory, with a view to suspending or cancelling their travel documents, visas and residence permits.
Under additional steps, the Council urged all States to make available to the Committee information on the violation of the measures contained in the relevant resolutions since 1993. It further urged all States, including those geographically close to Angola, to take immediate steps to enforce, strengthen or enact legislation making it a criminal offence under domestic law for their nationals or other individuals operating on their territory to violate the measures imposed by the Council against UNITA.
In a related provision, it underlined the important role played by SADC in implementing the measures contained in the relevant resolutions and its determination to strengthen such implementation. It invited SADC to make known to the Committee what assistance it required in implementing this and previous resolutions, and expressed its intention to initiate a dialogue with SADC in that regard.
In that connection, it strongly urged States and international organizations to consider providing financial and technical assistance to the Community. It also invited SADC to consider measures to strengthen air traffic control systems in the subregion for the purpose of detecting illegal flight activities across national borders, and to consider the establishment of an air traffic regime for the control of regional air space.
The Council President for the month of April and Chairman of the Sanctions Committee, Robert Fowler (Canada) introduced the draft resolution.
Council Work Programme
The Security Council met this afternoon to continue consideration of the situation in Angola. It had before it the final report of the Panel of Experts on Violations of Security Council Sanctions against the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), which covers violations of sanctions and contains recommendations to make the sanctions more effective.
The sanctions at issue prohibit the sale or delivery of arms and military equipment to UNITA; prohibit the provision of petroleum products to UNITA; prohibit the purchase of diamonds mined in areas controlled by UNITA; require the seizing of bank accounts and other financial assets of UNITA; and mandate the closing of UNITA representation offices abroad, as well as restrictions on the travel of senior UNITA officials and adult members of their immediate families.
According to the report, Panel members visited nearly 30 countries, meeting, among others, with government officials, police and intelligence sources, commercial companies and journalists. In January, the Chairman of the Panel, Robert R. Fowler (Canada), together with its Vice-Chairman and Rapporteur, interviewed a number of key defectors from UNITA in Angola.
The report states that the active efforts of Mr. Fowler, together with recent actions taken by governments and efforts by non-governmental organizations and others, have already made it harder for UNITA to sell its diamonds, and more expensive for UNITA to acquire arms and military equipment as a result of the increased risks of exposure to its suppliers and transporters. However, unless the Security Council and the international community remain engaged in the effort, there is a very real risk that UNITA and its partners will go back to doing business as usual.
Regarding arms and military equipment, the report concludes that, in addition to arms and equipment captured in battle, UNITA was able to import large quantities of arms and military equipment as a result of four key factors. First has been the willingness of certain countries in Africa to provide their end-user certificates to UNITA and to facilitate the passage of arms and military equipment through their territory -- most notably Zaire under President Mobutu Sese Seko, Togo and Burkina Faso. Second has been the willingness of some arms supplying countries -- most notably Bulgaria -- to sell weapons officially or unofficially. Third has been the eagerness of international arms brokers and air transport carriers to act as intermediaries between UNITA and suppliers. A fourth factor has been the capacity of UNITA to continue to pay for what it wants.
The report recommends, among other things, that the Security Council should apply sanctions against leaders and governments found to have been deliberately breaking the sanctions relating to the supply of arms and military equipment to UNITA, that governments agree to register, license and monitor the activities of arms brokers, and that information collected through this exercise be stored in national databases and be made available to other governments. All arms transfers by governments should provide for the mandatory authentication and reconciliation of all end-user certificates, as well as verification of stated undertakings contained in those certificates.
Regarding petroleum and petroleum-related products, the Panel concludes that a number of former and current heads of State in Africa helped UNITA circumvent Council sanctions against the provision of such products. Those implicated include: the former President of Zaire, Mobutu Sese Seko; the former President of the Republic of Congo, Pascal Lissouba; the former Prime Minister of the Republic of Congo, General Joachim Yhombi Opango; and the President of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaore.
The report goes on to recommend that fuel stocks and movements should be closely monitored in the border areas of Zambia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and, to a lesser extent, Namibia, adjacent to UNITA-controlled areas.
On the subject of diamonds, the report concludes that UNITA's ability to sell its diamonds is based on its access to diamond-rich territories, on its easy and protected access to external locations where diamond deals can be transacted, and on the ease with which illegal diamonds can be sold and traded on major diamond markets, particularly in Antwerp. Authorities at the highest levels in Burkina Faso and Rwanda have facilitated meetings between UNITA and diamond dealers from Antwerp. South Africa was also a place where transactions occurred, but such activities were not conducted with the support or participation of the Government of South Africa.
The report notes the apparent inability or unwillingness of the responsible authorities in Belgium to police effectively the smuggling of illegal Angolan diamonds onto the Antwerp diamond market. Lax controls within Angola have also facilitated diamond smuggling in that country.
The report recommends that forfeiture should be provided for where the legal origin of rough diamonds cannot be established by the possessor; that Member States of the United Nations should apply sanctions against individuals and enterprises intentionally breaking United Nations sanctions relating to UNITA diamonds; and that practical measures should be devised by the responsible government and industry authorities to limit UNITA's access to legitimate diamond markets. It further recommends that dealing in undeclared rough diamonds be considered a criminal offence in countries hosting important diamond marketing centres.
As far as UNITA finances and assets are concerned, the report concludes that the bulk of UNITA's assets are retained in the form of rough diamonds, which are packaged and sold as needed. Nonetheless, a network of banks, financial institutions and money managers continue to be connected with UNITA and its representatives and suppliers. According to the report, President Eyadema of Togo and deposed President Bedie of Côte d'Ivoire aided UNITA in trying to circumvent the sanctions on financial assets imposed by the Council. The report specifically notes the apparent absence of any action by Morocco to track down or freeze UNITA assets transferred to that country with the knowledge of Moroccan officials prior to the imposition of financial sanctions by the Council.
The report recommends that Member States should be encouraged to make provision for the forfeiture of UNITA-controlled assets whose provenance cannot be traced to a lawful source, and that a substantial bounty or "finder’s fee percentage" be given to any institution, non-governmental organization or individual that traces, tracks down and identifies UNITA assets that are subject to sanction.
With respect to UNITA representation abroad, the report concludes that while UNITA no longer operates formal "Embassies", Burkina Faso, Togo, Côte d'Ivoire, Zambia and Rwanda provided actual support and protection for UNITA representatives and easy access for senior UNITA officials wishing to travel there. In the United States, France, Belgium, Portugal, Switzerland and South Africa, among others, UNITA is able to maintain an "unofficial" representative presence with the knowledge, but without the direct support, of the host government.
The report concludes further that a number of countries have disregarded the Council's ban on travel by senior UNITA officials and members of their immediate families. The worst offenders were identified as Burkina Faso, Togo and Côte d'Ivoire, while Rwanda, Zambia and South Africa were also found to have lax or selective enforcement. A number of countries -- Belgium, France and Portugal in particular -- were either unable for legal reasons or unwilling to prevent senior UNITA officials and/or adult members of their immediate families from residing in or transiting their territories. In this regard, the report recommends further that the status of senior UNITA officials and representatives residing abroad should be re-examined by the countries concerned, with a view towards the immediate expulsion of those found to be still actively engaged in UNITA's military or political affairs.
In related matters, such as the role of transport in sanctions busting and the shooting down of two United Nations aircraft, the report recommends that the Southern African Development Community (SADC) consider the introduction of mobile radar systems for the purpose of detecting illegal flight activities across national borders, and that the SADC give consideration to the establishment of an air traffic regime for the control of regional air space, rather than on a per country basis. The report further recommends that Member
States geographically close to Angola should take immediate steps to enforce, strengthen or enact legislation making it a criminal offence to violate sanctions imposed by the Security Council against UNITA.
The report also recommends that the Council apply appropriate sanctions against governments found to have been intentionally breaking the sanction. It expresses the Panel's hope that the Council will now seize this opportunity to demonstrate that international sanctions can be made to work effectively, and that Member States and others will be held accountable to the international community for their actions. That message, says the report, would be heard not just in Angola, but in many other current and potential areas of conflict as well.
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