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Sudan represents one of the most urgent challenges

Presidential statement from Security Council debate on Sudan

Foreign Secretary William Hague delivered the Presidential Statement at the United Nations Security Council debate on Sudan on 16 November 2010.

Speaker: Foreign Secretary William Hague

The Security Council emphasises that the situation in Sudan represents one of the most urgent challenges facing the Council.

The Security Council reaffirms its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, peace and stability of Sudan, and to a peaceful and prosperous future for all Sudanese people and underlines its support for the Sudanese parties’ full and timely implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), including the holding of the referenda on the self-determination of the people of Southern Sudan and on the status of Abyei and of the popular consultations in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile, and for a peaceful, comprehensive and inclusive resolution of the situation in Darfur.

The Security Council recalls that the Sudanese parties have full responsibility for the implementation of the CPA, reaffirms its support for and encourages their further efforts to that end and welcomes the leadership of the African Union (AU) and the support provided by the African Union High Level Panel (AUHIP), under the leadership of President Thabo Mbeki, and by Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

The Security Council recognises the parties’ commitment to CPA implementation, remains actively seized of the matter and expresses its readiness to act as necessary in support of full implementation of the CPA by the parties. The Council underlines the importance of close co-ordination between international actors involved in assisting the Sudanese peace processes.

The Security Council urges the CPA parties, while working to make unity attractive and recognising the right to self determination of the people of Southern Sudan, to take urgent action to implement their commitment, reaffirmed at the High-Level Meeting on Sudan held in New York on 24 September to ensure peaceful, credible, timely and free referenda that reflect the will of the people of South Sudan and Abyei, as provided for in the CPA.

In this regard, the Security Council welcomes the start of registration for the South Sudan referendum on 15 November and encourages further efforts to ensure that the referenda are held on 9 January 2011 in accordance with the CPA and as scheduled in the timeline published for the South Sudan Referendum by the South Sudan Referendum Commission (SSRC).

The Security Council is concerned by the continued delays in releasing to the SSRC the full funding needed for preparations to continue to move forward.

The Security Council calls on the parties and all Member States to respect the outcome of credible referenda, held in accordance with the CPA, that reflect the will of the people of Southern Sudan and Abyei. It requests all parties to refrain from unilateral action and to implement the CPA.

The Security Council underlines the importance of the CPA parties making rapid progress on a way forward for Abyei’s referendum, outstanding CPA issues, and on resolving critical post-referendum issues in a peaceful, mutually beneficial manner, including the border, security, citizenship, debts, assets, currency and natural resources.

In this context, the Security Council welcomes progress in the negotiations, led by President Mbeki, towards a ‘Framework for Resolving Outstanding Issues Relating to the Implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and the Future Relations of North and South Sudan’, on which agreement was reached on 13 November.

The Security Council urges the parties to resume negotiations on Abyei expeditiously and to reach agreement on all outstanding issues without further delay.

The Security Council underlines the need for the CPA parties to promote calm , including by providing immediate and ongoing reassurance to people of all nationalities in Sudan, including Southerners in the North and Northerners in the South, that their rights, safety and property will be respected whatever the outcome of the referenda.

The Security Council calls for an immediate end to statements threatening the security of vulnerable populations. The Security Council also emphasises that protection of civilians is primarily the responsibility of the Sudanese authorities. The Security Council urges the parties to work actively with local leaders to mitigate tensions in Abyei and other border areas.

The Security Council reaffirms its support for UNMIS and reiterates its call for all parties to co-operate fully with the mission in the discharge of its mandate in this crucial period, in particular by ensuring full, unhindered access, freedom of movement for UNMIS personnel and equipment, and for the delivery of referenda materials.

The Security Council welcomes and encourages the UN’s work in contingency planning around the referenda and calls on Member States to support UNMIS’ efforts.

The Security Council reaffirms its support for the UN Secretary General’s Panel for the Referenda led by President Benjamin Mkapa. The Security Council underlines the importance of close coordination between the Panel, all domestic and international observation missions.

The Security Council underlines that, whatever the outcome of the referenda, continued co-operation between the CPA parties will remain essential for managing the transition process, implementing the post-referenda arrangements, and maintaining peace and prosperity, and stresses the mutual benefits of partnership in this regard. The Council encourages the international community to support these efforts. The Council urges the CPA parties to respect their obligations.

The Security Council reaffirms its support for the AU-UN led peace process for Darfur, hosted by the State of Qatar, the work of Joint Chief Mediator Djibril Bassole and the principles guiding the negotiations. The Council strongly urges all rebel movements to join the peace process without further delay or preconditions, and all parties immediately to cease hostilities and engage constructively in negotiations with a view to finding a lasting peace in Darfur.

The Security Council expresses concern about attacks on civilians by militias and calls for all support to such groups to cease. The Security Council expresses its willingness to consider measures against any party whose actions undermine peace in Darfur.

The Security Council expresses deep concern about the increases in violence and insecurity in Darfur, including ceasefire violations, attacks by rebel groups, aerial bombardment by the Government of Sudan, increased inter-tribal fighting, and attacks on humanitarian personnel and peacekeepers, which have restricted humanitarian access to conflict areas where vulnerable populations reside.

In this context, the Security Council calls on all parties to protect civilians and maintain full, safe and unhindered access for humanitarian workers to the population in need of assistance. The Security Council notes the need to support efforts to halt arms flows into Darfur in contravention of the arms embargo strengthened by resolution 1945 (2010). The Security Council recalls the importance it attaches to an end to impunity, and to justice for crimes committed in Darfur.

The Security Council reaffirms its support for UNAMID and reiterates its call on the Government of the Sudan and all relevant parties to co-operate fully with the mission in discharging its mandate, and to provide full unhindered access and freedom of movement, as well as its call for an end to impunity for those who attack peacekeepers and humanitarian workers.

The Security Council welcomes improved relations between Sudan and Chad and encourages them to co-operate further in order to contribute to peace and stability in Darfur and the wider region.

The Security Council encourages full implementation of the Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement, including the provisions regarding rehabilitation, recovery and development and welcomes the initiative of the Government of Kuwait to hold a Conference on Investment and Development in Eastern Sudan in December 2010.

The Security Council calls for respect for international law, international human rights law and humanitarian law; protection of freedom of expression; humanitarian access across Sudan, including in the border areas; and an end to all harassment of civil society. The Security Council underlines the importance of increased participation of women in the Sudanese peace processes.

The Council notes the considerable humanitarian, early recovery and peacebuilding needs of Sudan and encourages the Sudanese authorities and international donors to fulfil their pledges to address them.

The Security Council underlines that full and timely implementation of the CPA is essential to peace and stability in Sudan and the region and to future co-operation between Sudan and the international community, and recognises that enduring co-operation between the parties will be essential for the benefit of all Sudanese people.

The Council affirms that the core objective of the international community and all stakeholders in Sudan is the peaceful co-existence of the people of Sudan, democratic governance, rule of law, accountability, equality, respect, human rights, justice and economic development, in particular the establishment of the conditions for conflict affected communities to build, strong, sustainable livelihoods.

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