Security Council renews UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus through mid-December

Security Council renews UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus through mid-December

Acting on the recommendation of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the Security Council today extended the mandate of United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) until 15 December.

Acting on the recommendation of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the Security Council today extended the mandate of United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) until 15 December.

In a unanimously adopted resolution, the Council also urged the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkish forces to rescind the restrictions imposed on 30 June 2000 on the operations of the UNFICYP and to restore the military status quo ante of Strovilia, a small hamlet inhabited by Greek Cypriots.

Among its various duties, UNFICYP monitors the ceasefire lines in Cyprus, which extend some 180 kilometres across the island. The buffer zone varies in width from under 20 metres to some 7 kilometres and covers 3 per cent of the terrain. Surveillance is maintained through a system of observation posts, as well as through air, vehicle and foot patrols.

UNFICYP was established in 1964 and has been renewed on a periodic basis since then. As of March, it comprised 1,204 troops and 35 civilian police. was established in 1964 and has been renewed on a periodic basis since then. As of March, it comprised 1,204 troops and 35 civilian police.