Security Council extends UN presence in Nepal for further six months

23 January 2009

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) for a further six months, and endorsed Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s proposals for a phased, gradual drawdown and withdrawal of the world body’s staff.

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) for a further six months, and endorsed Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s proposals for a phased, gradual drawdown and withdrawal of the world body’s staff.

In a unanimously adopted resolution, the 15-member body expressed its continued readiness to support the peace process in Nepal, where an estimated 13,000 people lost their lives during a decade-long civil war that came to an end when the Government and the Maoists signed a peace deal in 2006.

In addition to assisting the country with the holding of landmark elections last year, UNMIN is also monitoring the management of arms and armed personnel of the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (CPN-M) and the Nepal Army.

In extending the Mission’s mandate until 23 July, the Council “concurs with the Secretary-General’s view that the current monitoring arrangements cannot be maintained indefinitely, and underlines the need for the Government of Nepal to consider necessary measures to reduce UNMIN’s monitoring requirements.”

It also called on the Government to continue to take the necessary decisions to create conditions conducive to completion of UNMIN’s activities by the end of the current mandate.

Mr. Ban, in his report, proposed that the number of arms monitors contributed by Member States be retained at the strength of 73, authorized when UNMIN was downsized in July 2008, but that most of the 18 remaining civilian posts which have been filled by retired military officers should be abolished as at 23 January 2009.

Among the other proposals, the number of substantive posts in the Mission would be reduced by a third and UNMIN would be headed by a representative, instead of a special representative of the Secretary-General.

The Council requested Mr. Ban to submit a report on progress towards the resolution’s implementation no later than 30 April, with a view to further downsizing the Mission.

 

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Further extension and downsizing proposed for UN presence in Nepal

The peace process in Nepal remains a fragile one, with critical agreements on the reintegration of former Maoist combatants still lacking, and will continue to need United Nations assistance, according to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who proposes an extension of the UN presence there, albeit at a slightly reduced capacity.