16 May 2006
Security Council Resolution 1678 (2006) Extends Mandate of UN Mission in Ethiopia, Eritrea until 31 May
Text Calls for Adjustment of Mandate, Troop Level If Boundary Commission Finds Parties in Non-Compliance with Previous Resolution
NEW YORK, 15 May (UN Headquarters) -- As it extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) until 31 May, the Security Council decided today that it would adjust that mandate, as well as the Mission's troop level by the end of the month if it determined, in light of the outcome of the 17 May Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission meeting, that the parties had not complied fully with resolution 1640 of 23 November 2005.
By its unanimous adoption of resolution 1678 (2006), the Council demanded that the parties comply fully with resolution 1640 (2005), particularly paragraphs 1 and 5. It asked the Secretary-General to report to it on the parties' compliance with the current resolution within seven days of its adoption, and to provide it with any further recommendations on adjusting UNMEE to focus on support for the demarcation process.
[According to paragraph 1 of resolution 1640 (2005), the Council deeply deplored Eritrea's continued imposition of restrictions on UNMEE's freedom of movement and demanded that the Government reverse its decision to ban Mission helicopter flights, as well as additional restrictions on its operations, and provide UNMEE with the access, assistance, support and protection it required.
Paragraph 5 demanded that Ethiopia accept fully and without delay the final and binding decision of the Boundary Commission and take immediate concrete steps to enable, without preconditions, the Commission to demarcate the border completely and promptly.]
In a related provision of the text adopted today, the Council once again called on Member States to provide continued support for UNMEE and contributions to the Trust Fund established in support of the demarcation process.
The Secretary-General's most recent report on the situation, dated 6 March (document S/2006/140), recommended an extension of UNMEE's mandate in its present configuration for two or three months, "in order for the forthcoming meeting of the Boundary Commission to bear fruit".
A binding decision of the Boundary Commission in 2002 had awarded Badme -- the town at the centre of a bitter, two-year border war that ended in 2000 -- to Eritrea, which has been increasingly critical of the United Nations for not forcing Ethiopia to accept that demarcation.
The meeting began at 12:12 p.m. and adjourned at 12:14 p.m.
The full text of resolution 1678 (2006) reads as follows:
"The Security Council,
"Reaffirming all its previous resolutions and statements pertaining to the situation between Ethiopia and Eritrea (hereinafter referred to as "the parties"), and the requirements contained therein,
including in particular resolutions 1640 of 23 November 2005, 1661 of 14 March 2006 and 1670 of 13 April 2006, as well as the statement of its President of 24 February 2006 (S/PRST/2006/10),
"Stressing its unwavering commitment to the peace process, and to the full and expeditious implementation of the Algiers Agreements,
"Bearing in mind the progress achieved in the Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission (EEBC) meeting on 10 March 2006 in London and looking forward to a positive outcome in the next EEBC meeting on 17 May 2006,
"1. Decides to extend the current mandate of United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) until 31 May 2006;
"2. Demands that the parties fully comply with resolution 1640 (2005), in particular paragraphs 1 and 5;
"3. Calls once again on Member States to provide continued support for UNMEE and contributions to the Trust Fund established in support of the demarcation process;
"4. Decides, in the event it determines that the parties have not demonstrated full compliance with resolution 1640 (2005), in the light of the outcome of the EEBC meeting on 17 May 2006, that it shall adjust the mandate and troop level of UNMEE by the end of May 2006;
"5. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council on the parties' compliance with resolution 1640 (2005) within seven days of the adoption of this resolution, and to provide to the Council any further recommendations on adjusting UNMEE to focus on support for the demarcation process;
"6. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter."
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