Date: Monday, 05 November 2018
UNITED NATIONS, – Even with Ethiopia calling for the removal of UN sanctions on Eritrea, the idea was removed from the UN Security Council's 10 July 2018 Press Statement. But now the draft UN Security Council resolution set for consultations on November 5 and a vote on November 14 contains this as Operative Paragraph 4, that the UN Security Council "Decides to lift from the date of adoption of this resolution the arms embargoes,
travel bans, asset freezes and targeted sanctions imposed on Eritrea by the Security Council in its
resolutions 1907 (2009) 2023 (2011), 2060 (2012) and 2111 (2013)." Inner City Press having obtained the draft is today putting it online on Patreon, here (and below). On November 5 and then 14 for the vote the UN Security Council meets about Somalia Eritrea sanctions - but Inner City Press remained banned from entering the UN, and still now permanently by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, his Global Communicator Alison Smale and spokesman Stephane Dujarric. Fox News story here, GAP blogs I and II. August 17 "ruling" here; petition here.
Eritrea Sanctions Would Be ... by on Scribd
And here is the draft resolution:
The Security Council,
PP1 Recalling all its previous resolutions and statements of its President on the situation in Somalia and Eritrea, in particular resolutions 733 (1992), 1844 (2008), 1907 (2009), 2023 (2011), 2036 (2012), 2093 (2013), 2111 (2013), 2124 (2013), 2125 (2013), 2142 (2014), 2182 (2014), 2244 (2015), 2317 (2016) and 2385 (2017),
PP2 Taking note of the final reports of the Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group (the SEMG) on Somalia (S/2018/XXX) and Eritrea (S/2018/XXX) and their conclusions on the situations in Somalia and Eritrea,
PP3 Reaffirming its respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity, political independence and unity of Somalia, Djibouti and Eritrea, and underscoring the importance of working to prevent destabilising effects of regional crises and disputes from spilling over into Somalia,
PP4 Condemning Al-Shabaab attacks in Somalia and beyond, expressing concern that Al-Shabaab continues to pose a serious threat to the peace and stability of Somalia and the region, and further expressing concern at the presence of affiliates linked to Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as Da’esh) and the security implications of the situation in Yemen for Somalia,
PP5 Reaffirming the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and international law, including applicable international human rights law, international refugee law, and international humanitarian law, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts,
PP6 Underlining its support for the efforts of the Somali authorities to deliver stability and security in Somalia and to reduce the threats to peace and security posed by Al-Shabaab and affiliates linked to ISIL (also known as Da’esh),
PP7 Condemning any flows of weapons and ammunition supplies to and through Somalia in violation of the arms embargo on Somalia, including when they result in supplies to Al-Shabaab and affiliates linked to ISIL (also known as Da’esh) and when they undermine the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia, as a serious threat to peace and stability in the region, and expressing concern at reports of increased illegal flows of weapons and ammunition supplies from Yemen to Somalia,
PP8 Welcoming the cooperation between the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), Federal Member States (FMSs), and the SEMG, and underlining the importance of these relationships improving further and strengthening in the future,
PP9 Welcoming the development of a conditions-based transition plan with clear target dates for the progressive transfer of security responsibilities from AMISOM to the Somali security institutions and forces, calling for its swift and coordinated implementation with full participation from all stakeholders, and recalling the critical importance of accelerating the implementation of the National Security Architecture agreement between the FGS and the FMSs, including decisions to define the composition and roles of Somalia’s security forces and to integrate and provide federal support to regional forces, in order to provide the foundation for a successful transition to Somali-led security,
PP10 Taking note of the efforts of the FGS to improve its notifications to the Committee pursuant to resolutions 751 (1992) and 1907 (2009) concerning Somalia and Eritrea (“the Committee”), urging further progress in this regard, and recalling that improved arms and ammunition management in Somalia is a fundamental component of greater peace and stability for the region,
PP11 Commending the efforts of the FGS to restore key economic and financial institutions, increase domestic revenue and implement financial governance and structural reforms, welcoming the continued progress on building a track record of reforms under the International Monetary Fund Staff-Monitored Programme, together with progress on the anti-corruption bill, and highlighting the importance of continual progress in these areas,
PP12 Welcoming the FGS’s efforts to implement the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Act (2015) and the National Communications Act (2017), underlining the importance of compliance with the counter-terrorism and national security provisions in this legislation, and further welcoming the establishment of a Financial Reporting Centre to serve as Somalia’s financial intelligence unit,
PP13 Underlining the importance of financial propriety in contributing to stability and prosperity, welcoming the efforts of the FGS to address corruption, and stressing the need for a zero tolerance approach to corruption to promote transparency and increase mutual accountability in Somalia,
PP14 Expressing serious concern at reports of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in waters where Somalia has jurisdiction, underlining the importance of refraining from illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, welcoming further reporting on the matter, and encouraging the FGS, with the support of the international community, to ensure that fishing licenses are issued in a responsible manner and in line with the appropriate Somali legal framework,
PP15 Expressing serious concern at the ongoing difficulties in delivering humanitarian aid in Somalia, and condemning in the strongest terms any party obstructing the delivery of humanitarian assistance, any misappropriation or diversion of any humanitarian funds or supplies, and acts of violence against and harassment of humanitarian workers,
PP16 Recalling that the FGS has the primary responsibility to protect its population, and recognising the FGS’s responsibility, working with the FMSs, to build the capacity of its own national security forces, as a matter of priority,
PP17 Commending efforts towards peace, stability and reconciliation in the region, including the signing of the Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship between Eritrea and Ethiopia on 9 July 2018, the signing of the Joint Declaration on Comprehensive Cooperation between Ethiopia, Somalia and Eritrea on 5 September 2018, and the signing of the Agreement on Peace, Friendship and Comprehensive Cooperation between Eritrea and Ethiopia on 16 September 2018,
PP18 Expressing concern at ongoing reports of Djiboutian combatants missing in action since the clashes in 2008, calling on Eritrea and Djibouti to continue to engage in resolving the issues of combatants, and urging Eritrea to share any further available detailed information pertaining to the combatants,
PP19 Taking note of increased engagement between Eritrea and Djibouti and strongly encouraging further efforts towards normalisation of relations and good neighbourhood between Djibouti and Eritrea, including cooperation in accordance with international law to resolve any disputes regarding their shared border,
PP20 Determining that the situation in Somalia continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security in the region,
PP21 Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,
Lifting of arms embargoes, travel bans, asset freezes and targeted sanctions on Eritrea
OP1 Recalls paragraphs 16 and 17 of resolution 1907 (2009) and recognises that during the course of its current and four previous mandates the SEMG has not found conclusive evidence that Eritrea supports Al-Shabaab;
OP2 Welcomes the meeting on 25 September 2018 between the representative of the Government of Eritrea and the Chair of the Committee, and further welcomes the meeting on 5 October 2018 between the representative of the Government of Eritrea and the Coordinator of the SEMG;
OP3 Welcomes the meeting between the President of Djibouti and the President of Eritrea in Jeddah on 17 September 2018;
OP4 Decides to lift from the date of adoption of this resolution the arms embargoes, travel bans, asset freezes and targeted sanctions imposed on Eritrea by the Security Council in its resolutions 1907 (2009) 2023 (2011), 2060 (2012) and 2111 (2013);
OP5 Urges Eritrea and Djibouti to engage on the issue of the Djiboutian combatants missing in action and calls on Eritrea to make available any further detailed information;
OP6 Urges the two parties to continue efforts to settle their border dispute peacefully in a manner consistent with international law, and reaffirms that it will continue to follow developments;
OP7 Decides that the mandate of the Committee pursuant to resolutions 751 (1992) and 1907 (2009), hereafter to be known as the Committee pursuant to resolution 751 (1992) (“the Committee”), shall include the tasks as set out in paragraph 11 of resolution 751 (1992), paragraph 11 of resolution 1844 (2008), and paragraph 23 of resolution 2036 (2012);
OP8 Requests the Committee to amend its guidelines, its implementation assistance notice and its website accordingly;
Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group
OP9 Decides to terminate the mandate of the Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group (SEMG), with effect from 16 December 2018;
Somalia Monitoring Group
OP10 Decides to establish, with effect from the date of adoption of this resolution, until 15 December 2019, the Somalia Monitoring Group (SMG), further decides that the mandate of the SMG shall include the tasks as set out in paragraph 13 of resolution 2060 (2012) and updated in paragraph 41 of resolution 2093 (2013), paragraph 15 of resolution 2182 (2014), paragraph 23 of resolution 2036 (2012) and paragraph 29 of this resolution as they relate to Somalia, and expresses its intention to review the mandate and take appropriate action regarding any extensions of the SMG mandate no later than 15 November 2019;
OP11 Requests the Secretary-General to take the necessary administrative measures as expeditiously as possible to establish the SMG, consisting of six members, in consultation with the Committee, until 15 December 2019, drawing, as appropriate, on the expertise of the members of the SEMG established pursuant to previous resolutions;
Somalia Arms embargo
OP12 Reaffirms the arms embargo on Somalia, imposed by paragraph 5 of resolution 733 (1992) and further elaborated upon in paragraphs 1 and 2 of resolution 1425 (2002) and modified by paragraphs 33 to 38 of resolution 2093 (2013) and paragraphs 4 to 17 of resolution 2111 (2013), paragraph 14 of resolution 2125 (2013), paragraph 2 of resolution 2142 (2014), paragraph 2 of resolution 2244 (2015), paragraph 2 of resolution 2317 (2016) and paragraph 2 of resolution 2385 (2017) (hereafter referred to as “the arms embargo on Somalia”);
OP13 Decides to renew the provisions set out in paragraph 2 of resolution 2142 (2014) until 15 November 2019, and in that context reiterates that the arms embargo on Somalia shall not apply to deliveries of weapons, ammunition or military equipment or the provision of advice, assistance or training, intended solely for the development of the Somali National Security Forces, to provide security for the Somali people, except in relation to deliveries of the items set out in the annex to this resolution;
OP14 Decides that supplies of items in the annex to this resolution to the FGS by Member States or international, regional and sub-regional organisations require an advance approval by the Committee on a case-by-case basis;
OP15 Reaffirms its decision that the entry into Somali ports for temporary visits of vessels carrying arms and related materiel for defensive purposes does not amount to a delivery of such items in violation of the arms embargo on Somalia, provided that such items remain at all times aboard such vessels;
OP16 Reiterates its decision that weapons or military equipment sold or supplied solely for the development of the Somali National Security Forces may not be resold to, transferred to, or made available for use by, any individual or entity not in the service of the Somali National Security Forces, and underlines the responsibility of the FGS and the FMSs to ensure the safe and effective management, storage and security of their stockpiles;
OP17 Welcomes in this regard the improvements made by the FGS in weapons registration, recording and marking procedures and encourages further improvements, expresses concern at reports of continued weapons diversion from within the FGS and FMSs, notes that further improved weapons management is vital in order to prevent the diversion of weapons, and reiterates that the Security Council is committed to monitoring and assessing improvements in order to review the arms embargo when all conditions as set out in Security Council resolutions are met;
OP18 Requests the FGS to facilitate full access for the SMG, on the basis of written requests by the SMG submitted at least ten days in advance, to all FGS armouries in Mogadishu, all FGS imported weapons and ammunition prior to distribution, all FGS military storage facilitates in SNA sectors and all captured weaponry in FGS custody, and to allow photographs of weapons and ammunition in FGS custody and full access to all FGS logbooks and distribution records, in order to enable the Security Council to monitor and assess progress in this area;
OP19 Welcomes the ongoing efforts of the FGS to develop detailed Standard Operating Procedures for weapons and ammunition management including an issue and receipt system to track all weapons post distribution, further welcomes the development of a mechanism to distribute weapons and ammunition to regional forces, consistent with the requirements of this resolution including paragraph 16, encourages that such a mechanism be expanded to include other military equipment and supplies, consistent with the requirements of this resolution including paragraph 16, and urges the FGS to finalise and implement these procedures as soon as possible;
OP20 Welcomes the establishment of the Joint Verification Team (JVT) and urges Member States to support improved weapons and ammunition management to improve the capacity of the FGS to manage weapons and ammunition;
OP21 Takes notes of FGS reporting to the Security Council pursuant to paragraph 9 of resolution 2182 (2014) and as requested in paragraph 7 of resolution 2244 (2015), calls on the FGS and FMSs to accelerate the implementation of the National Security Architecture agreement, the Security Pact, and the transition plan in order to provide Somali-led security and protection to the people of Somalia, and requests the FGS to report to the Security Council in accordance with paragraph 9 of resolution 2182 (2014) and as requested in paragraph 7 of resolution 2244 (2015), by 28 February 2019 and then by 31 August 2019, on the structure, composition, strength and disposition of its Security Forces, including the status of regional and militia forces, and to include as annexes the reports of the JVT requested in paragraph 7 of resolution 2182 (2014);
OP22 Recalls that the FGS has the primary responsibility to notify the Committee of any deliveries of weapons, ammunition or military equipment or the provision of advice, assistance or training to its Security Forces, pursuant to paragraphs 3 to 8 of resolution 2142 (2014), and calls upon the FGS to improve its notifications to the Committee;
OP23 Calls upon the FGS to continue to improve the timeliness and content of notifications regarding the completion of deliveries, as set out in paragraph 6 of resolution 2142 (2014);
OP24 Requests the FGS to incorporate the notifications regarding the destination unit in the Somali National Security Forces upon distribution of imported arms and ammunition, detailed in paragraph 7 of resolution 2142 (2014), into the regular FGS reporting to the Security Council requested in paragraph 20;
OP25 Stresses Member States’ obligations pursuant to the notification procedures set out in paragraph 11 (a) of resolution 2111 (2013), urges Member States to strictly follow the notification procedures for providing assistance to develop Somali security sector institutions, and encourages Member States to consider the Implementation Assistance Notice of 13 July 2018 as a guide;
OP26 Recalls paragraph 2 of resolution 2142 (2014) and notes that support for the development of the Somali National Security Forces may include, inter alia, building infrastructure and provision of salaries and stipends solely provided to the Somali National Security Forces;
OP27 Urges increased cooperation by the FGS, FMSs and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), as set out in paragraph 6 of resolution 2182 (2014), to document and register all military equipment captured as part of offensive operations or in the course of carrying out their mandates;
OP28 Calls upon the FGS and FMSs to enhance civilian oversight of their security forces, to continue to adopt and implement appropriate vetting procedures of all defence and security personnel, including human rights vetting, in particular through investigation and prosecuting individuals responsible for violations of international law, including international humanitarian law, and in this context recalls the importance of the Secretary-General’s Human Rights and Due Diligence Policy in relation to the support provided by the United Nations to Somali security forces;
OP29 Decides that the SMG will continue the investigations started by the SEMG related to the export to Somalia of chemicals that may be used as oxidisers in the manufacture of improvised explosive devices, such as the precursors ammonium nitrate, potassium chlorate, potassium nitrate and sodium chlorate with a view to considering further action, and calls on Members States and the FGS to cooperate with the SMG in this regard;
OP30 Underlines the importance of timely and predictable payment of salaries to the Somali security forces and calls on the FGS to continue to implement systems to improve the timeliness and accountability of payments and supply of provisions to the Somali security forces, and welcomes the progress to date on biometric registration;
OP31 Recalls the need to build the capacities of the Somali National Security Forces, in particular the provision of equipment, training and mentoring, in order to develop credible, professional and representative security forces to enable the gradual handing over of security responsibilities from AMISOM to the Somali security forces in line with the transition plan, and encourages further donor support and coordination as set out in the Security Pact;
OP32 Requests the Secretary-General to conduct a technical assessment regarding the arms embargo, with options and recommendations for improving implementation, by 15 May 2019;
Threats to peace and security in Somalia
OP33 Condemns Al-Shabaab’s increased revenue from natural resources including the taxing of the illicit sugar trade, agricultural production and livestock, further expresses concern at the group’s involvement in the illicit charcoal trade, and welcomes SMG reporting on this issue;
OP34 Requests the FGS to coordinate with the SMG to facilitate interviews of suspected members of Al-Shabaab and ISIL (also known as D’aesh) held in FGS custody, in order to assist the SMG with its investigations;
OP35 Welcomes the efforts that the FGS has made to improve its financial management procedures including the successful completion of two International Monetary Fund (IMF) Staff-Monitoring programmes and the commitments to further reform made under the third Staff-Monitored programme, encourages the FGS and FMSs to maintain the pace of reform to increase transparency, accountability, comprehensiveness and predictability in revenue collection and budget allocations, and expresses concern at the generation and distribution of counterfeit Somali currency;
OP36 Welcomes efforts by the FGS to address corruption including the development of anti-corruption legislation, expresses concern at the continued reports of corruption and diversion of public resources including reports of financial impropriety involving members of the FGS, FMSs and Federal Parliament which pose a risk to state-building efforts, and in this context underlines that individuals engaged in acts which threaten the peace and reconciliation process in Somalia may be listed for targeted measures;
OP37 Recognises that addressing outstanding constitutional issues around power and resource sharing between the FGS and FMSs is crucial for Somalia’s stability, calls upon the FGS and the FMSs to work constructively together to address these issues in an inclusive manner, and encourages the FGS and FMSs to implement the outstanding elements of the National Security Architecture agreement, including decisions around the make-up, distribution and command and control of the security forces and resource-sharing;
OP38 Reaffirms Somalia’s sovereignty over its natural resources;
OP39 Reiterates its serious concern that the petroleum sector in Somalia could be a driver for increased conflict, welcomes the political agreement on petroleum and mineral resource-sharing reached by the FGS and the FMSs in June 2018, and underlines the vital importance of the FGS and FMSs putting in place, without undue delay, resource-sharing arrangements and credible legal frameworks to ensure that the petroleum sector in Somalia does not become a source of increased tension;
Somalia Charcoal ban
OP40 Reaffirms its decision regarding the ban on the import and export of Somali charcoal, as set out in paragraph 22 of resolution 2036 (2012) (“the charcoal ban”), welcomes efforts of Member States to prevent the import of charcoal of Somali origin, reiterates that the FGS and FMSs shall take the necessary measures to prevent the export of charcoal from Somalia, urges Member States to continue their efforts to ensure full implementation of the ban, and further reiterates that individuals and entities engaged in acts which violate the charcoal ban may be listed for targeted measures;
OP41 Reiterates its requests in paragraph 18 of resolution 2111 (2013) and paragraph 16 of resolution 2431 (2018), that AMISOM support and assist the FGS and FMSs in implementing the total ban on the export of charcoal from Somalia, and calls upon AMISOM to facilitate regular access for the SMG to charcoal exporting ports;
OP42 Welcomes the efforts of the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) to disrupt the export and import of charcoal to and from Somalia, and further welcomes the cooperation between the SMG and CMF in keeping the Committee informed on the charcoal trade;
OP43 Expresses concern that the charcoal trade provides significant funding for Al-Shabaab, and in that context reiterates paragraphs 11 to 21 of resolution 2182 (2014), and further decides to renew the provisions set out in paragraph 15 of resolution 2182 (2014) until 15 November 2019;
OP44 Condemns the ongoing export of charcoal from Somalia, in violation of the total ban on the export of charcoal, calls on Member States to share information with the SMG, requests Member States to seize within their territorial waters and ports, in accordance with their national legislation and consistent with international law, vessels carrying charcoal in violation of the charcoal ban, with the Member State seizing the vessel requested to inform the Committee within thirty days regarding the status of the crew members and arrangements that have been made to prevent the vessel from contributing to future violations of the charcoal ban, further requests the SEMG to continue to focus on this in their next report and propose further measures, taking account of human rights concerns, and expresses its intention to consider further measures if violations continue;
OP45 Encourages the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime to continue its work with the FGS, within its current mandate, under the Indian Ocean Forum on Maritime Crime to bring together relevant Member States and international organizations to develop strategies to disrupt the trade in Somali charcoal;
Humanitarian access in Somalia
OP46 Expresses grave concern at the ongoing humanitarian situation in Somalia and its impact on the people of Somalia, commends the efforts of the United Nations humanitarian agencies and other humanitarian actors to deliver life-saving assistance to vulnerable populations, condemns in the strongest terms attacks against humanitarian actors and any misuse of donor assistance and the obstruction of the delivery of humanitarian aid, reiterates its demand that all parties allow and facilitate full, safe and unhindered access for the timely delivery of aid to persons in need across Somalia, and encourages the FGS to improve the regulatory environment for aid donors;
OP47 Decides that until 15 November 2019 and without prejudice to humanitarian assistance programmes conducted elsewhere, the measures imposed by paragraph 3 of resolution 1844 (2008) shall not apply to the payment of funds, other financial assets or economic resources necessary to ensure the timely delivery of urgently needed humanitarian assistance in Somalia, by the United Nations, its specialised agencies or programmes, humanitarian organisations having observer status with the United Nations General Assembly that provide humanitarian assistance, and their implementing partners including bilaterally or multilaterally funded non-governmental organisations participating in the United Nations Humanitarian Response Plan for Somalia;
OP48 Requests the Emergency Relief Coordinator to report to the Security Council by 15 October 2019 on the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Somalia and on any impediments to the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Somalia, and requests relevant United Nations agencies and humanitarian organisations having observer status with the United Nations General Assembly and their implementing partners that provide humanitarian assistance in Somalia to increase their cooperation and willingness to share information with the United Nations;
Targeted sanctions in Somalia
OP49 Recalls its decisions in resolution 1844 (2008) which imposed targeted sanctions and resolutions 2002 (2011) and 2093 (2013) which expanded the listing criteria, and notes one of the listing criteria under resolution 1844 (2008) is engaging in or providing support for acts that threaten the peace, security or stability of Somalia;
OP50 Reiterates its willingness to adopt targeted measures against individuals and entities on the basis of the above-mentioned criteria;
OP51 Recalls paragraph 2 (c) of resolution 2060 (2012) and emphasises that certain misappropriation of financial resources is a criterion for designation and applies to misappropriation at all levels;
OP52 Reiterates its request for Member States to assist the SMG in its investigations, reiterates that obstructing the investigations or work of the SMG is a criterion for listing under paragraph 15 (e) of resolution 1907 (2009) and further requests the FGS, FMSs and AMISOM to share information with the SMG regarding Al-Shabaab activities;
OP53 Requests the SMG to provide monthly updates to the Committee pursuant to resolution 751 (1992), and a comprehensive midterm update, as well as to submit, for the Security Council’s consideration, through the Committee, a final report by 15 October 2019;
OP54 Requests the Committee, in accordance with its mandate and in consultation with the SMG and other relevant United Nations entities, to consider the recommendations contained in the reports of the SMG and recommend to the Security Council ways to improve the implementation of and compliance with the Somalia arms embargo, the measures regarding the import and export of charcoal from Somalia, as well as implementation of the measures imposed by paragraphs 1, 3 and 7 of resolutions 1844 (2008) in response to continuing violations;
OP55 Requests the Committee to consider, where and when appropriate, visits to selected countries by the Chair and/or Committee members to enhance the full and effective implementation of the measures above, with a view to encouraging States to comply fully with this resolution;
OP56 Decides to remain seized of the matter.
1. Surface to air missiles, including Man-Portable Air-Defence Systems (MANPADS);
2. Guns, howitzers, and cannons with a calibre greater than 12.7 mm, and ammunition and components specially designed for these;
3. Shoulder fired anti-tank rocket launchers, such as Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) or Light Anti-Tank Weapons (LAWs), rifle grenades, and grenade launchers, including ammunition for all such launchers;
4. Mortars with a calibre greater than 82 mm;
5. Anti-tank guided weapons, including Anti-tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs) and ammunition and components specially designed for these items;
6. Charges and devices intended for military use containing energetic materials; mines and related materiel;
7. Weapon sights with a night vision capability."
On September 29, Eritrea's foreign minister Osman Mohammed Saleh told the UN General Assembly from which Guterres banned Inner City Press: "the unwarranted sanctions that were imposed on Eritrea in December 2009 and 2011 respectively. With positive winds of peace flowing in our region, several UNSC member States are these days calling for the immediate lifting of the deplorable sanctions. The
diplomatic discourse is not however fully coherent. As it happens, some countries are looking for procedural and other pretexts and
preconditions. The apparent aim is to move the goalpost and maintain the illegal
sanctions on Eritrea... The principal architects of the sanctions were previous US Administrations
who felt that they could use their unassailable power, and raw coercion, to ram through the UNSC, punitive measures against a small country and people to advance their misguided regional agenda. It is worth remembering here that certain officials in the US Administration had mulled imposing similar sanctions on Eritrea in 1999-2000, at the height
of the border war with Ethiopia, in order to impose asymmetric arrangements through coercive means." On September 20, this from the UN Security Council: "The members of the Security Council welcomed the Agreement on Peace, Friendship and Comprehensive Cooperation signed by the President of the State of Eritrea and the Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia on 16 September 2018, in Jeddah and expressed appreciation to the role played by His Majesty King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and by the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in facilitating this agreement. They took note of the commitment of the two countries to open a new era of peace, friendship and comprehensive cooperation as well as promote regional peace and security. The members of the Security Council also welcomed the meeting between the President of Djibouti and the President of Eritrea on 17 September 2018, in Jeddah, under the auspices of His Majesty King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia. The members of the Security Council express hope that this meeting will open a new chapter in the relations between Djibouti and Eritrea and encourage the two countries to continue to engage in meaningful dialogue. The members of the Security Council noted that these developments represent a historic and significant milestone with far-reaching positive consequences for the Horn of Africa and beyond. They commended the leaders of the region for their wisdom and courage in their continued effort to resolve disputes and call upon them to sustain these recent efforts and gains with a view to opening a new chapter of cooperation thereby ensuring greater peace, stability and prosperity in the region. In this regard, the members of the Security Council stand ready to support countries of the region in their endeavors. " We'll have more on this. The UK's Karen Pierce, who will become President of the Security Council in two days on August 1 (after a Twitter Q&A at 11 am on July 31, watch this site) on Eritrea said "It's something the Council needs to discuss. I think the developments are very positive. They're very welcome, and at some point that will need to be reflected in the coming months on sanctions. But the Council hasn't had a full discussion of that yet, so it's something we need to talk about." This with Inner City Press banned and the UK doing nothing about it - in fact, the formal banner is the UK's own Alison Smale, on vacation, who never responded to or acknowledged a single one of Inner City Press' seven e-mail including one on June 25 after an improper ouster by a UN Lieutenant with retaliatory animus, requesting protection. After the July 30 meeting, Sweden's Olof B. Skoog who oversaw or at least aceepted Press censorship for 28 of the 31 days of his Council presidency read out these Press Elements: "The members of the Security Council welcomed the first visit to the Horn of Africa by the Chair of the Sanctions Committee for Somalia and Eritrea since 2010 in May. The members of the Security Council noted that the Chair was not able to visit Eritrea during his visit.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the continued commitment of the Federal Government of Somalia to political and security reforms, and to improving weapons and ammunition management in order to comply fully with the terms of the partial lifting of the arms embargo.
The members of the Security Council looked forward to further progress in this regard, and reiterated their readiness to support this process including through the Sanctions Committee and the Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group.
They strongly commended the historic signing of the Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship by the leaders of Eritrea and Ethiopia on 9 July, and the commitment by both parties to jointly endeavour to ensure regional peace, development and cooperation.
The members of the Security Council supported and encouraged Ethiopia in line with the commitment made by the Prime Minister of Ethiopia to help in normalizing relations between Eritrea and Djibouti in the same spirit that helped facilitate the historic agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea.
The members of the Security Council further welcomed the announcement that Eritrea and Somalia would work together to foster regional peace and stability.
The members of the Security Council reiterated their readiness to support the region in these efforts." Inner City Press, thanks to Guterres and Smale with many assists, could not ask any questions. We'll have more on this. On July 27, US Vice President Mike Pence issued this read out: "The Vice President met today with Ethiopian Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed. The Vice President reaffirmed the United States’ longstanding partnership with the people of Ethiopia and applauded the historic reform efforts by Prime Minister Abiy, including improving respect for human rights, reforming the business environment, and making peace with Eritrea. The Vice President encouraged continued Ethiopian leadership in resolving regional conflicts in the Horn of Africa, as well as strengthening U.S.-Ethiopia trade and investment. The two leaders underscored their countries’ shared values and their commitment to building an even stronger partnership in the days ahead." On July 12, hours before his belated press conference arranged to be without press, Guterres rather than OCHA head Lowcock bragged about and took credit for public money directed to Ethiopia: "The UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) released today US$15 million to urgently scale up humanitarian assistance to people affected by escalating inter-communal violence in Ethiopia. Historical tensions between communities in southern Ethiopia escalated in April 2018 and led to large-scale displacements, damage of properties and loss of life. Close to one million men, women and children are currently being sheltered with already food insecure relatives or residing in cramped public buildings without adequate food and water and substandard sanitation and hygiene facilities. “Under the leadership of Dr. Abiy Ahmed, new measures to bring unity and reconciliation have spurred great enthusiasm within the country and high international praise,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres. “However, the impact of inter-communal tensions presents a challenge for the new leadership. Nearly one million people are displaced and require urgent help, especially during this rainy season. It is critical to act immediately and that is why CERF is releasing $15 million to enable urgent aid." In the past, such announcements were done by OCHA. But Guterres needs a win, and so wants "better" press coverage that he has allowed the roughing up, and now has banned, the Press. It is easy to impose sanctions, at least on country like Eritrea, but very hard to take them off even when the original reasons, support for Al Shabaab in Somalia, is gone. Cote d'Ivoire on July 10 carried the water of Djibouti; others including the penholder the UK have their own reasons. The about-face of Ethiopia - which hasn't changed its UN Ambassador despite the changes in Addis Ababa - didn't move the needle. Meanwhile Inner City Press, which exposed the use of the UN's Panel of Experts to call for regime change, remains banned from even entering the UN.
Fox News story here ("UN roughs up, ejects, bans reporter from headquarters: Caught on tape"); petition to Guterres here; GAP blogs Iand II (“Harassment of US Journalist Intensifies at the UN”). The UN under Antonio "Winds of Change" Guterres is corrupt. And it is hard to know the UK's reasons, not only in light of the telling chaos of Boris Johnson's resignation, but due to secrecy. The UK denied Inner City Press' request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 for documents, and banned it from its Mission's "background briefing," ostensibly finding tape recorder holders for Japanese media which write more about US rappers than the UN to be more "international media" that Inner City Press. The P2 are a joke. Back on 14 November 2017 before the Security Council voted again on Somalia and Eritrea sanctions, Inner City Press asked the penholder on the resolution, the UK's then-Ambassador Matthew Rycroft, if there is any evidence of Eritrea supporting Al Shabaab and if not, why not at least separate the two sanctions regimes. Rycroft acknowledged there is no evidence, but said discussions on separating the two hadn't been successful. Video here. Fromthe UK transcript: Inner City Press: On the Eritrea sanctions, is there any evidence that Eritrea has been supporting Al Shabab? And if there’s not, why aren’t there two separate sanctions regimes? Does the UK favour that? Amb Rycroft: "We did explore that actually with our Council colleagues and there wasn’t the appetite on the Security Council to do that. I think there has been progress on the Al Shabab issue. There’s no evidence at the moment that the Eritrean authorities have been supporting Al Shabab, and we very much welcome that. But as you know, there are other aspects to why there is a sanctions regime on Eritrea, and what we urge the authorities there to do is to engage with the monitoring group, to engage with the chair of the sanctions committee, so that those people can come back with that positive evidence which they say is there, and that would help change the dynamic in the Security Council." Later on the morning of November 14, after four abstentions from the combined sanctions, Inner City Press was informed by a well-placed wag that the UK was not opposed to splitting the two: "the UK would rather get 15-0 votes for Somalia then all these abstentions because of the Eritrea issue." We hope to have more on this. Back in May 2017, Rycroft said "six months ago, the Security Council was quite divided on whether there should be sanctions or not on Eritrea. Before the next decision on the sanctions regime on Eritrea, coming up in November, we are going to do a review today of whether there should be a sanctions regime. We, as penholder on that issue, are seeking to find a way to unite the Security Council so that there can be some specific measures in a roadmap that the authorities of Eritrea would need to meet in order to lift the sanctions regime. Our national position is that the conditions are not yet right to lift the sanctions. But that if Eritrea did some of the things which we will set out today then we would look at it on the basis of the evidence."
When the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the State of Eritrea Sheila Keetharuth held a press conference at the UN on October 28, Inner City Press went to ask her if she considered the impact of sanctions on Eritrea. Video here. She answered only in terms of arms embargo, they said she simply chose not to look at the issue.
On November 10, when Somalia Eritrea sanctions were voted on, five countries abstained: Angola, China, Egypt, Russia and Venezuela. Eritrea's charge d'affaires made a statement, which we've published on Scribd, here.
Before the vote, Inner City Press asked UK Ambassador Matthew Rycroft a question; he spoke about the Somalia Eritrea sanctions helping to limit support to Al Shabaab. Video here. But the current lack of evidence of Eritrean support to Al Shabaab has been repeatedly cited. And there are new reports calling the SEMG and its former officials into question, here. We'll have more on this.
By contrast to Keetharuth, the Rapporteur on the Democratic People Republic of Korea Tomas Ojea Quintana answered detailed questions from Inner City Press about sanctions including unilateral sanctions on coal sales, for example. Is there no consistency between UN Special Rapporteurs? Video here.
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