The situation in Angola Briefing by the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola
|(The Presidency changes each month to the next member in alphabetical order)|
|Mr. Shen Guofang
|Mr. Dangue Réwaka
|Sir Jeremy Greenstock
Adoption of the agenda
The situation in Angola
Briefing by the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola
The Security Council will now begin its consideration of the item on its agenda. The Security Council is meeting in accordance with the understanding reached in its prior consultations.
I should like to draw the attention of the members of the Council to document S/1999/829, which contains the text of a letter dated 28 July 1999 from the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola addressed to the President of the Security Council, and to the annexed report by the Chairman.
At this meeting the Security Council will hear a briefing by the representative of Canada and Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola, His Excellency Ambassador Robert Fowler. I give the floor to Ambassador Fowler.
I wish to thank you, Mr. President, and our colleagues on the Security Council for organizing this open briefing of the Council on a subject that I think is of significant interest to the broader membership of the Organization.
As I mentioned in informal consultations yesterday, what I hope to do this morning is to briefly recap the work that I have undertaken as Chairman of the Angolan sanctions Committee since January, specifically to refer to the visits I have made and to refer to my plan of work for the coming year, so that members of the Council and the broader membership of the Organization will have an understanding of that plan and so that they could fit any input that they might wish to make into those plans.
I might begin with a statement of the blindingly obvious and note that the Angolan sanctions Committee is somewhat of a misnomer. The Committee was formed to apply the sanctions passed by the Security Council against UNITA; there are no sanctions against the Government of Angola. I think it is important to avoid any confusion on that point.
The purpose of the sanctions against UNITA is to help establish the conditions for a resumption of the political dialogue within Angola so as to achieve a durable end to a civil war that has lasted for over two decades. That civil war has seen the death of more than a million people. There are now over 1.7 million internally displaced persons within Angola, 900,000 of them displaced only since last December, and all this out of a population of less than 11 million people.
According to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), there are more than 2 million war-affected people within Angola, and that is 2 million people washing back and forth across battle lines and across minefields laid by both the Government of Angola and UNITA. The sanctions against UNITA are not punitive in intention or by design, and they can be calibrated, as noted very specifically in Security Council resolutions, to reflect geopolitical change.
A premise of our work in the sanctions Committee is that this war can be ended only through political dialogue, and our intention is to do everything possible to limit the ability of UNITA to pursue the war option. We are not aiming for perfection; rather, our aim is to diminish UNITA’s capacity to wage war, that is, to diminish UNITA’s revenues derived from the sale of diamonds and to increase the cost of UNITA’s arms procurement.
Our objective is to give teeth to hitherto ineffective sanctions and to make very clear that sanctions violations are no longer cost-free — to end the culture of impunity that has surrounded sanctions in this area for some time.
We wish to establish very clearly the fact that there is a broad consensus within the Council and within the Organization at large about these intentions and about our collective commitment to see these sanctions applied forcefully, effectively and specifically to make very clear that people do care and that they are watching.
To recap, the sanctions in question were put in place beginning in 1993, and they encompass prohibitions on the sale and supply of arms and other forms of military assistance to UNITA. There are sanctions against the representation abroad and travel by UNITA and the adult members of the immediate families of the UNITA leadership; sanctions against the sale or supply of petroleum products to UNITA; sanctions against the provision of funds or financial resources to UNITA; and, a year ago, very specific sanctions against the export of diamonds by UNITA.
I will now comment on the steps that the Committee is taking to give these sanctions teeth. First, David Angell and I, as Chairman, have made two visits abroad to Africa and Europe. Secondly, we are about to announce the creation of the two expert panels which the Council authorized by resolution in early May. Those panels will provide the Committee for the first time with an independent research and investigation capability.
In mentioning my colleague David Angell, I should note that David is providing the brains and energy behind everything I am doing to give life to our collective efforts to end the civil war in Angola, and I find his assistance absolutely invaluable in this matter.
In May I spent 20 days in central and southern Africa visiting Angola, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. In each I was enthusiastically welcomed and encouraged to make these sanctions work. Those African leaders with whom I met expressed real concern at the prospect of a never-ending civil war in Angola. There was concern that the Angola-Democratic Republic of the Congo nexus could significantly destabilize the region and that within it there were implications of a widening conflict.
I encountered real cynicism at the impact of sanctions to date and indeed with regard to the commitment of the Security Council in this respect. I also encountered a clear willingness to consider practical steps to give the existing sanctions teeth and effectiveness. Bombs going off in Lusaka this spring reminded everyone of the urgent need to dampen Angolan-Zambian tensions. In this regard, I would note the enormous commitment of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Swaziland, Albert Shabangu, who has pursued persistently efforts to defuse those tensions, and who from my perspective has achieved significant success. That success, I think, was very evident at the recent Organization of African Unity summit meeting in Algiers.
In making these trips, my purpose was to explore measures to improve the effectiveness of the sanctions against UNITA, to urge Governments to enact legislation, regulations, Orders in Council and so on to give force of law to those sanctions within the national jurisdiction of all Member States and to appeal to all those we encountered for information, particularly hard intelligence on the matter of sanctions-busting. There is an absolute dearth of hard intelligence in this area, and without it we simply cannot do our job.
My purpose, then, was not to investigate specific allegations, a task I had neither the time nor the qualifications to accomplish. Our African trip resulted in a set of 14 preliminary recommendations, which were included in a report that we submitted to the Council in early June. The more substantive recommendations — recommendations that will be taken up by the panels to pursue them further — raise the prospect of sanctions monitors on the ground in the region, address the issue of air surveillance and interdiction, and propose a close collaboration with the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) and other international organizations.
Our trip also included extensive discussion of the effective application of sanctions against UNITA’s trade in diamonds. In this regard, we met repeatedly with executives from De Beers and with the parastatal diamond corporations in Angola, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa, and our preliminary conclusions from that trip were that the industry indeed does wish to be part of a solution in this matter, not just because it is the right thing to do nor because it is the law, but because to do otherwise is so manifestly not in the business interests of the diamond industry.
Our objective, of course, is not to inflict any collateral damage on the legitimate diamond trade. Botswana and Namibia, for instance, are countries that have an enormous dependence on the diamond industry, which accounts for almost half of their gross domestic products. Therefore it is in nobody’s interest to see damage inflicted across the board on the diamond industry as we seek to specifically manage the tiny proportion of the business that relates to UNITA’s trade in diamonds.
That said, Mr. Savimbi is generally deemed to have raised somewhere between $3 and $4 billion in diamond revenues over the last eight years, and we believe that practical steps can be taken to limit the profit he derives from that trade. Bearing in mind that diamonds are the single greatest concentration of value that exists in the world, we know that diamonds will come to market somewhere, somehow. What we want to do is ensure that when do come to market and the profits are derived by UNITA, those profits are as limited as we can make them. We hope that we can do this by standardizing import and export procedures and by introducing standardized, credible certificates of origin. The panels — in conjunction with the industry, exporting and importing countries and the markets — will look into this in much greater detail over the next few months.
I hope that any solutions that we do devise with regard to managing the export of and trade in illegal diamonds could have useful applications elsewhere, for instance with regard to Sierra Leone, should that be necessary.
My second visit took place just a couple of weeks ago. It included visits to Europe and included the diamond markets in Belgium and the United Kingdom. We visited Ukraine as one of several Central and Eastern European countries alleged to be sanctions-busting, and the headquarters of the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) in France. With the help of the President of the Council for last month, Ambassador Jagne, we sought permission and were invited to address the Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) at its meeting in Algiers a couple of weeks ago.
From my perspective, this second visit was extremely useful. The results of it are outlined in a report that we issued yesterday evening and which I believe is before members of the Council and will be available through you, Sir, once it has been fully translated, if that has not already happened.
For this latest trip we had three overriding objectives. The first was to convey the fact that many people in many places are now much more aware of both the fact and purpose of these sanctions and are taking them seriously. We brought this message to the OAU, to the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council at the headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels, and to many others. We are grateful for the forceful endorsement adopted by the OAU and the European Union of the importance of sanctions against UNITA.
Secondly, we explored opportunities for further collaboration with other organizations, including Interpol, the World Customs Organization, the European Commission and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), to name but a few.
Thirdly, we discussed specific measures to implement existing sanctions. An example of this would be the steps taken by Ukraine to ensure compliance which are outlined in the report we produced yesterday evening.
We continued our discussions with the diamond industry by spending a day with the Central Selling Organization in London and by meeting in Antwerp with the International Diamond Manufacturers Association and with the World Federation of Diamond Bourses and others. We received further evidence and assurance that the industry still wishes to be part of the solution and is committed to that end. This will, I hope, be demonstrated through the industry’s cooperation with the expert panels in the coming months.
The report before the Council contains further recommendations, including a call for assistance to SADC for capacity-building for sanctions implementation and a recommendation seeking EU and NATO cooperation — which is already significant — to reaffirm their inclusion of compliance with Security Council sanctions resolutions among the criteria those two organizations use as they consider applications for accession.
Further recommendations include collaboration with the World Customs Organization; creation of a working group between Interpol and the panels to examine further methods of identifying sanctions-busters, sanctions-busting activities and the effective application of sanctions; and further collaboration among interested Member States, particularly diamond importers and exporters, with a view to harmonizing procedures and documentation for the export and import of rough diamonds, possibly in conjunction with the World Customs Organization, with a view to establishing new customs procedures and standardized documentation.
The next step is the creation of the expert panels, which, of course, we mandated in resolution 1237 (1999) in early May. The purpose of these panels, I would recall, is to collect information on sanctions violations and to recommend measures both to end those violations and improve the implementation of sanctions. One panel, which will have six experts, will address the sources of revenue, funding and petroleum supplies of UNITA — the resources that enable UNITA to continue to make war. The other panel, which will have four members, will address the sources of military support for UNITA and the way Mr. Savimbi gets that support to the part of Angola that he controls.
My hope is that these panels will work very closely together, effectively as one, during their six-month mandate. I expect to nominate the panel members in the next few days and to appoint them — following, of course, consultation with Council members. I will be nominating a former Ambassador to Angola as chairman and a senior military officer from the subregion to head the second panel. Nominations for panel one will include experts in each of the four non-military areas covered by sanctions — that is, diamonds, petroleum, funding, and travel and representation, as well as a brilliant rapporteur. Nominations for panel two will include two customs experts with experience with the Rwanda Commission of Inquiry and a recognized expert on small arms.
In addition, I have asked several Governments in the region to give the panels access to their technical expertise on diamonds — expertise which will simply be fundamental to the success of the panels in that area. No two experts will be from the same country. As set out in the conceptual framework for the panels, the sanctions committee’s two Vice-Chairman — that is, Ambassador Petrella of Argentina and our current Council President, Ambassador Hasmy of Malaysia — have agreed to contribute to the panels’ work.
In conclusion, I am greatly encouraged by the response we have received so far. Sanctions are beginning to be taken seriously. I am especially encouraged by the unanimity and support within the Security Council, and I thank all colleagues on the Council deeply for this support. I think this is an area — and maybe these days there are not too many of them — but this is an area where we are absolutely ad idem on an issue, and I think we are all committed to this work and to seeing if we cannot therefore bring an early end to this murderous war in Angola.
To do that we will, of course, require the active cooperation of all Member States — that is, of Member States beyond this Council. We need that cooperation to assist us with the enforcement of sanctions and with the provision of information relating not only to specific instances of sanctions-busting but also to offer us views and advice on how we might look at things differently or consider different approaches. And of course we need the assistance of all the Member States in the Organization to demonstrate through their words and actions that they too want these sanctions to work.
We also, of course, look forward to putting in place collaborative partnerships, such as the one I mentioned with Interpol, that will last as long as these sanctions remain in place, but which also might serve our collective interests in the Council with regard to other sanctions regimes in other places.
Mr. President, thank you for making this meeting possible and allowing me to make this report.
I thank the representative of Canada and Chairman of the 864 Committee for his comprehensive briefing and his kind words to me.
I would like to thank Ambassador Fowler for his very informative briefing. We highly appreciate and very much admire his proactive approach as Chairman of the Angola sanctions Committee. In both of his briefings, Ambassador Fowler touched on an essential point at the heart of the problems associated with the implementation of sanctions, and that is the lack of hard intelligence. Some of Ambassador Fowler’s most important recommendations are intended to deal with precisely this problem in the future. It is obvious that his work is of wider relevance: it provides a framework from which other sanctions regimes may draw useful lessons.
We are looking forward to the start of the expert panels that will look into the more detailed issues of specific sanctions violations. We are also pleased that the larger part of this exercise can be funded from the regular budget, as is appropriate for exercises like this that are of relevance to the whole United Nations membership.
During his first briefing, Ambassador Fowler put forward 14 recommendations, including the possibility of deploying sanctions monitors in the region, who could play an important role in collecting more detailed information about possible violations of sanctions. We are supportive of this idea, but we would like to repeat our concern about the difficult issue of the safety of these monitors, who would have to work in an environment where huge interests are at stake.
Of particular interest also is Recommendation 18, in the latest report, proposing a direct link between the Committee and the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol). Such collaboration between these two organizations was also mentioned in Recommendation 5 of Ambassador Fowler’s first report. His subsequent findings on such a possible contact are encouraging.
We have noted with particular interest that the diamond industry wants to be part of the solution to the problem of the identification of UNITA diamonds brought illegally to market — a fundamental problem, as Ambassador Fowler rightly called it. We are looking forward to the concrete proposals that may come out of his further contacts with representatives of the diamond industry. We hope, with Ambassador Fowler, that the experience gathered in this field may help elsewhere, such as in the sanctions regarding Sierra Leone.
As we all know, and as the Angolan people know all too well, the war in Angola has gone on far too long. Unfortunately, as history has demonstrated, this state of affairs will continue as long as UNITA possesses the capacity to let it.
We believe effective implementation of the sanctions against UNITA is an indispensable ingredient for the end to this war. The sanctions regime against UNITA has been cited as a model package, directly focused as it is on the commodities and activities that enable UNITA to wage war. These sanctions are not punitive. They are intended simply to diminish UNITA’s war-making ability and thereby help establish the conditions for — and encourage UNITA to resume — a political dialogue as a method of bringing a durable peace to the people of Angola.
Until now, UNITA has managed to evade most of these sanctions and has therefore been able to remain aggressive on the battlefield. The world community, nations and citizens alike, must work together to change this. Peace for the people of Angola must be our constant focus. Profit from sanctions-busting must be seen for what it is: the means to continued war and suffering.
Under the leadership of Ambassador Fowler of Canada, the momentum is changing. Positive things are happening with our international partners that tell us the desire to strictly enforce the United Nations sanctions against UNITA is taking hold. As the Chair of the UNITA sanctions Committee this year, Ambassador Fowler’s energy and creativity have sparked great progress and helped many people see, perhaps for the first time, the immense importance of this enterprise.
Specific points of progress have already been achieved. The Security Council earlier this summer created two expert panels to collect information on violators and violations and to recommend measures aiding enforcement. As we have just heard from Ambassador Fowler, those panels should become operational soon. Chairman Fowler himself has been indefatigable, as has his colleague Mr. Angell, in spending many weeks in Africa and Europe, investigating disparate leads and enlisting national leaders to support this effort.
The United States, for its part, stands ready to work together with any State committed to the common coal of improved implementation of the United Nations sanctions against UNITA. In this vein, my Government has worked to identify senior UNITA officials to whom specific travel and financial sanctions apply; we have promulgated regulations with criminal penalties for United States citizens violating these sanctions; we have volunteered personnel for the expert panels, and we are seeking to do the same with financial support; and we have also consistently sought to share intelligence information on violations and violators.
While Angola’s neighbours are not the sole actors in making sanctions against UNITA more effective, their role cannot be overemphasized. As the porous borders that are used to supply UNITA are made ever more solid, the peace and security of the whole region are improved. The profiteers who help supply UNITA, if allowed to continue their malevolent mischief today, will create death and suffering elsewhere tomorrow. We must work together to put an end to these destructive activities.
In this light, the United States welcomes Chairman Fowler’s report today. We urge all Member States of the United Nations to consider seriously his findings and recommendations.
We are grateful to Ambassador Fowler for his informative briefing. We confirm that we very highly value his work as Chairman of the Security Council Committee established by Security Council resolution 864 (1993).
The Russian delegation expresses profound concern at the continuing armed conflict in Angola. We reaffirm our assessment regarding the main responsibility of UNITA, headed by Mr. Savimbi, for the situation in the country. We believe that the main reason for this latest spiral in armed struggle lies in the fact that the leadership of UNITA has deliberately thwarted the implementation of the peace agreements. We are convinced that there is no alternative to a peaceful settlement. Lasting peace in Angola can be attained only by reviving the peace process.
An important additional way to step up pressure on Savimbi in order to bring UNITA back towards the political settlement, we believe, lies in enhancing the effectiveness of the sanctions regime. We note that there is a direct link between violations of the sanctions regime — which the expert panel to study violations of the sanctions regime will be mandated to investigate — and the ongoing threat in the region to international peace and security.
It is from that standpoint that we view the report submitted to us by the Chairman of the sanctions Committee on his trip to a number of European countries and to Algiers in order to elaborate proposals for possible measures for more effective implementation of the Security Council’s enforcement action against UNITA. We endorse the Committee’s support for the recommendations of the Secretary-General contained in his report on Angola, in document S/1999/49, in particular that States should provide appropriate information; that the Committee should review the effectiveness of the sanctions following the visit of the Chairman to the region; that the Security Council’s attention should be drawn to noted instances of violations; that monitoring be improved in key ports and airports; that the Secretariat should draw up a report on illegal arms deliveries, petroleum products, on the export of diamonds and also on the movement of UNITA funds.
With regard to the measures suggested by the sanctions Committee within the context of improving its activities, we support sending reminders to Member States about the need for them to comply with the appropriate resolutions of the Council. We consider the attention given to illegal deliveries of arms to be justified, as they have the most destabilizing impact on the situation in the country. It is time to update the list of UNITA officials subject to travel restrictions. Likewise, the process of drawing up a full list of Angolan aeroplanes, which is necessary for the effective implementation of the air sanctions, has not yet been completed. We are prepared to discuss specifically questions of combating the illegal export of diamonds, which is one of the main sources of UNITA funding.
We support the active policy of the Chairman of the sanctions Committee and his creative approach to performing his duties. We express the hope that the expert panels to study violations of the sanctions regime will finally be established in the near future and will begin their work so that the sanctions regime can be further improved.
I should like to thank you, Mr. President, for convening this open meeting of the Security Council to hear the Chairman of the Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola, Ambassador Robert Fowler of Canada. We should like to thank Ambassador Fowler for his second report, which is certainly very valuable, and for the statement that he has just made.
It is clear that the effectiveness of the sanctions regime against UNITA is essential for the achievement of lasting peace in Angola. It seems to us that the objectives of the trip have been further carried forward by the recommendations made, and we hope that the members of the panels will be able to make best use of those recommendations so as to help the Council.
We fully agree with the need to raise the cost of military equipment to UNITA to the maximum so as to force it to seek a political solution as quickly as possible. The need for States to provide in good faith as much information as possible to the sanctions Committee seems to be an indispensable element, given the points made by Ambassador Fowler in his report, particularly those on page 11 of the document before us.
In conclusion, we are sure that Ambassador Fowler’s initiatives will be very useful in improving the effectiveness of other sanctions regimes and, accordingly, the effectiveness of one of the most valuable tools available to the Security Council in ensuring the implementation of its resolutions.
Let me join with my colleagues who spoke earlier in thanking Ambassador Fowler for his comprehensive and, indeed, very informative report on his recent visit to Europe and Algiers.
The question of Angola has reached a critical stage and is leaning towards total catastrophe. It is at this critical moment that the international community must stand firm and support the Angolan people. My delegation was particularly gratified by the declaration on Angola made by the presidency of the European Union during the visit of Ambassador Fowler, in which the Union committed itself to assisting all States in Africa to fully implement the Security Council sanctions against UNITA.
In this regard, we call upon our European partners to cooperate very closely with the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in their efforts to achieve a peaceful resolution of the Angolan conflict. The declaration made during the OAU meeting in Algiers fully committed OAU member countries to resolving conflicts in Africa peacefully, in order to put Africa on the path towards peace, progress and development. The support of the international community is required.
My delegation agrees with the Chairman of the sanctions Committee that his substantive recommendations, which we very much support, should be considered by the expert panels before they are considered in detail by the Security Council. We believe that this will allow more light to be shed so that Council members can better understand the issues at hand. We look forward to the assembling of the expert panels with a view to their beginning work as soon as possible.
We appreciate the fact that the measures relating to mercenaries were also discussed with the Member States concerned. We would like to remind those Member States that some of their nationals are still assisting UNITA as pilots and advisers, thus impeding the effectiveness of the sanctions against UNITA and thereby prolonging the agony and suffering of innocent Angolan civilians.
As I indicated earlier, my delegation agrees with the recommendations contained in the report, particularly with regard to the urgent need for the donor community to generously provide financial and material assistance to SADC and to countries neighbouring Angola in their efforts to enhance and strengthen the regional capacity for the implementation and monitoring of the Council-imposed sanctions against UNITA. We also share the concern expressed by the Chairman at the possibility that weapons that are not up to the standard of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and which are sold or otherwise disposed of by new members of that alliance, might enter the arms market in central and southern Africa or otherwise find their way into UNITA’s possession. It is our sincere hope that NATO will look into this matter seriously.
My delegation welcomes the intention of the International Diamond Manufacturers Association to include the issue of Angola among the topics to be discussed at the World Diamond Congress, and invites the Chairman of the sanctions Committee on Angola to address that Congress, which is to be held in Antwerp in July next year. We hope that by that time the expert panels will have completed their work.
The Chinese delegation thanks the delegation of Malaysia for its efforts in convening this important meeting.
The Chinese delegation also thanks Ambassador Fowler for his very detailed briefing; for having paid two visits to the countries concerned, and the region as a whole, in order to conduct a broad exchange of views with the parties involved in the question of Angola; and for submitting a detailed and informative report. We take this opportunity to thank him and his colleagues once again for their effective and innovative work.
The situation in Angola has deteriorated in recent days. The fighting between the Government and the rebels is escalating. The humanitarian situation is worse than it has ever been in recent years and is the cause of serious concern to the international community. The international community, and the Security Council in particular, have been repeatedly called upon to take practical measures to prevent the further exacerbation of the situation in Angola and to contribute to the earliest possible settlement of the conflict there.
It is broadly accepted in the international community that UNITA bears the primary responsibility for the current situation. UNITA has long refused to honour the commitments it undertook under the Lusaka Protocol. It uses the diamonds produced in the areas under its control to subsidize illicit arms-trafficking. It has made repeated provocations, launched attacks and killed civilians. It has even gone so far as to attack United Nations humanitarian personnel. It is only right that the international community should condemn and sanction UNITA.
Regrettably, however, for one reason or another, the Security Council’s sanctions against UNITA have never been effectively implemented. Far from being diminished, UNITA’s freedom to act has expanded. The number of weapons at its disposal has increased, not decreased. Its attitude has grown more entrenched, not enlightened. This can only be a cause for concern and reflection.
We strongly appeal to the parties concerned to implement the relevant resolutions of the Security Council in letter and spirit and to stop providing arms or any other form of assistance to UNITA. We support Ambassador Fowler’s proposal to strengthen the sanctions regime. It is the first such proposal since the conflict in Angola began that is comprehensive and forceful. We hope that it will be adopted by the Security Council on the basis of ample discussion and implemented as soon as possible.
Like other countries, China believes that strengthening the sanctions regime against UNITA is not an end in itself, but rather a means of creating the conditions necessary to an eventual political settlement of the question of Angola. We hope that the international community will work as one and coordinate its actions to ensure that the reinforced sanctions regime will persuade UNITA to lay down its arms as soon as possible, cease hostilities and embark on the road to national reconciliation at an early date. We sincerely hope that the question of Angola will be fully settled in the near future.
Thank you, Sir, for getting this meeting together. I share the warm appreciation of colleagues for the Angola sanctions Committee Chairman’s excellent briefing. I really think that we are right to be applauding the time, work and spirit that Ambassador Fowler and his team have put into this subject.
It is not just right that the Council should be doing all it can to improve and tighten the implementation and enforcement of the sanctions it has imposed on UNITA. It is also part of the action that we should be taking as a council to support legitimate Governments in Africa — something, I think, we are going to have to spend an increasing amount of time on. It is too common in Africa that political opposition is expressed only through armed force and we have to get international support together for legitimate Governments against rebellions and for democratic expression of political opposition. The subject of UNITA sanctions should lead us into a wider discussion of what we do overall in the continent of Africa to further the spread of democratic expression.
The United Kingdom agrees with many of the recommendations identified in his reports to the Council by Chairman Fowler, as my United States colleague calls him — I think we perhaps need a bit of autocracy on this subject. Many of these recommendations can be implemented now and we urge the sanctions Committee and member States to do so immediately. In particular, the United Kingdom can agree that there should be closer international coordination between regional organizations and the United Nations and that licensed foreign diamond purchasers should liaise with the Committee in devising practical measures to limit UNITA’s access to the world diamond market.
Here, we welcome the statement issued by the International Diamond Manufacturers Association on 5 July, which urges its members to refrain from purchasing any diamond from Angola without a certificate of origin. The cooperation of the diamond industry is essential if the revenue that UNITA enjoys from the sale of diamonds is to be reduced. We also agree that measures should be taken by the Government of Angola to create a more effective certificate-of-origin scheme than the one that exists at present, and we agree that sanctions-busting should become a criminal offence in all Member States in an effort to deter those who seek to profit at the expense of the helpless.
Some of the remaining recommendations will, obviously, require further study by the expert panels established by resolution 1237 (1999) to investigate violations of sanctions against UNITA. The United Kingdom looks forward to the final report from these panels, which will form the basis for the Council’s consideration of further measures against UNITA. To assist the work of these expert panels, the United Kingdom is ready to contribute the sum of $300,000 to a trust fund, should it be required to fund the work of the expert panels.
Finally, I have a couple of questions for Ambassador Fowler. First of all, after the establishment of the panels, what does he foresee as the next steps for the Council and the sanctions Committee to improve the enforcement of the sanctions regime, or are we only waiting for the results of the panels? Secondly, what plans does he have to undertake visits to other States that have close involvement in the diamond trade?
I thank the representative of the United Kingdom for the kind words he addressed to me.
I wish first of all to thank you, Mr. President, for convening this meeting, and to join others in congratulating and encouraging Ambassador Fowler on the timely initiatives he has taken this year.
It made great sense for him to travel to the region affected by the sanctions regime. Last year, the then Chairman of the Sierra Leone sanctions Committee, the representative of Sweden, had the same idea. This has proved to be an extremely useful exercise. I think it would be a good idea for the chairmen of other sanctions committees to follow Ambassador Fowler’s example. Such travel gives us a far more realistic picture of the ways in which sanctions regimes are applied and of their impact on the affected regions, and provides the Security Council with more specific and, I would hope, more positive help in its work. I would just stress once again that the Chairman’s initiative here is very welcome indeed.
I agree also with Ambassador Fowler’s conscientiousness in reminding us of the facts and in regularly informing the members of the Security Council about the scope of the humanitarian disaster caused by the war in Angola. The Security Council must bear the numbers and the scope of the tragedy clearly in mind when we compare the Council’s work on this subject with that on other crises, especially those in Europe.
We should, I think, endorse the philosophy voiced by Ambassador Fowler when he said that in order to restore the means to attain a reasonable peace and in order not to eliminate any possibility of discussion, we must reduce UNITA’s war machine. Obviously, this involves reducing UNITA’s material and financial resources. This brings us back to the notion of sanctions.
We appreciate the realism with which Ambassador Fowler undertook his mission. He made two trips and sought in a concrete, simple and logical way to consider what can be done to ensure that the sanctions work and that UNITA’s military capacity is consequently reduced. That capacity is what is now preventing Angola from returning to the road to peace and economic development.
In that connection, I must stress the great interest of all of Ambassador Fowler’s recommendations. I would highlight recommendation nineteen, relating to the diamond industry, for this is the crux of the war waged by UNITA. The talks Ambassador Fowler held with individuals in the diamond trade were useful. We must strengthen controls and set better standards in that trade, and we must first and foremost lay stress on the importance of certificates of origin. This is a straightforward and direct recommendation. We commend Ambassador Fowler both for bringing this to the Security Council and for having already discussed it in the field. We can only hope that those responsible for this trade — which, of course, is a legitimate one — will ensure that there are no departures from the standards and that, through the institution of a more specific and serious certificate of origin, UNITA’s sources of income are dried up. It would thus be very useful to follow Ambassador Fowler’s recommendation faithfully.
For our part, we have already stated that we will fully support the activities of the expert panels to be established by Ambassador Fowler; we are entirely willing to respond to any request to nominate experts, and, as we have said, are willing to provide material support for the work of the expert panels.
Finally, we should welcome the response in the subregion, at the seventieth ordinary session of the Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity, and among African countries to Ambassador Fowler’s recommendations. This is commendable, because we know that some of the countries that have stated their willingness to help strengthen the sanctions regime are in a very difficult economic situation; their efforts are therefore all the more highly appreciated. They deserve strong support, because what is done with respect to Angola can also be useful as an example to be followed. We must recall the very harmful impact of the diamond trade on the crisis in Sierra Leone. Everything that can be done and everything that has been achieved thanks to Ambassador Fowler’s work and the support it will provide to the Security Council, and thanks to the positive response of African countries on Angola, should prove useful also for other crisis areas such as Sierra Leone.
Let me begin, Mr. President, by commending you for organizing this open briefing, which is a step in the right direction in our common endeavour to bring greater transparency to the work of the Security Council.
My delegation would like to join previous speakers in expressing our sincere gratitude to Ambassador Fowler and the entire Canadian delegation for giving a new lease of life to the “Angolan sanctions” Committee — a misnomer, as Ambassador Fowler has said. As Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola, Ambassador Fowler’s practical approach to the issue of sanctions has given a new sense of direction and purpose to that Committee. We salute his dynamism, sincerity, resolve, courage and effective leadership in rekindling interest in the Angolan civil war and in exploring ways and means of making the sanctions more effective in order to yield the desired results.
The people of Angola have suffered for too long, and the time has now come to renew our collective commitment to putting an end to this protracted conflict. As Ambassador Fowler has said, this is an area where the Council speaks with one voice. Since we see eye to eye on this question, it is our view that with renewed resolve we can undoubtedly succeed in extinguishing one of the fiercest hot spots on the African continent. We also look forward to the establishment of the expert panels.
But in the final analysis, Ambassador Fowler’s statement before the seventieth ordinary session of the Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity says it all:
“African States are by no means alone in bearing responsibility for respecting and enforcing the sanctions against UNITA. Supply and demand must both be addressed … Africans are not buying UNITA’s diamonds, and Africans are not producing tanks and armoured personnel carriers and vast quantities of heavy ammunition for Mr. Savimbi’s use, but it is African States that will in large part determine, through their actions, whether the Security Council sanctions against UNITA succeed or fail. And it is clearly African States that would bear the brunt of failure.” (S/1999/829, appendix I, p. 9)
It is our fervent hope also that other members of the international community, in particular Council members, will emulate the good example of the delegation of the United Kingdom and donate generously towards the work of these panels.
I should like first of all to join my colleagues in thanking Ambassador Fowler for his comprehensive briefing and report on his visit to Europe and Algeria regarding the implementation of the sanctions against UNITA.
Ambassador Fowler has invested great effort in trying to find ways to improve the implementation of the measures imposed against UNITA. His personal contribution to the work of the sanctions Committee represents a significant innovation and, I think, is vital to peace and development in Angola.
His recommendations are serious. They represent a perfect understanding of the goals of the sanctions Committee and create a solid basis for peace in Angola. I even think that the quality, creativity and comprehensiveness of his report are such that they somehow constrain the Council to make the sanctions more effective.
Last June the Security Council adopted resolution 1173 (1998), condemning the leadership of UNITA and holding it responsible for the present crisis in Angola due to its failure to implement its obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. By the same resolution, the Council imposed financial sanctions upon UNITA and adopted measures intended to curb official contacts and trade that benefit its leadership in the hope that these would have an impact on UNITA’s attitude.
Despite this strong action by the Security Council, the situation in Angola deteriorated. UNITA regained control of several localities and revealed its military strength. Brazil deeply regrets that after years of efforts to rebuild peace, Angola is once again suffering from the consequences of a civil war. The Government of Angola deserves strong international support at this critical moment. The people of Angola need peace.
I think that an essential step in the direction of peace is following the report presented by Ambassador Fowler, first of all because it would send a clear message to Savimbi that his only alternative is to lay down his arms and accept the obligations imposed by the Security Council.
That is why my delegation supports all of the recommendations contained in the present report. We are sure that the panels, as conceived, would be a useful instrument to implement those recommendations and strengthen the sanctions regime against UNITA. We are also particularly encouraged by the information regarding the readiness of Governments, international organizations and representatives of the diamond industry to support United Nations efforts to end the conflict in Angola.
Finally, I hope that the adoption at this meeting, with the full support of the Security Council, of the recommendations of Ambassador Fowler’s report would be a step in the direction of peace in Angola.
I wish to thank you, Mr. President, for having taken the welcome initiative of organizing this meeting. The delegation of Gabon supports the efforts made by Ambassador Fowler, the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993), of 15 September 1993, to render more effective the sanctions imposed against UNITA. I wish to assure him once again of the full cooperation of my delegation in the discharge of his mandate.
We eagerly await the conclusions and recommendations of the panels established by resolution 1237 (1999). Every effort should be made so that the people of Angola can once again enjoy peace and concord and devote their efforts to the economic and social development of their country.
We share the view expressed by Ambassador Fowler in paragraph 23 of his second report (S/1999/829), dated 28 July 1999, to the Council. We, like him, are convinced that it is through political dialogue and not through force of arms that an end can be put to the conflict that has been tearing Angola asunder for more than two decades now.
I should like first of all to thank you, Mr. President, for convening this public meeting in the context of the overall effort by the Security Council to keep other members informed of the work of the Council with a view to ensuring transparency. My delegation would like also warmly to thank Ambassador Fowler, the Chairman of the Security Council sanctions Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993).
I should like to ask Ambassador Fowler a question about a matter that concerns his Committee: arms-trafficking. How can arms-trafficking be controlled? Arms factories are at work day and night. And there is also the question of the arms trade. Sometimes there is civil conflict in countries and weapons are sold there. How can we stop this deadly trade? In Angola, of course, this question also relates to diamond trading. The conflict in Angola has gone on for two decades now. Of course there is a lot of money to be made from arms-trafficking, at the same time as this involves trafficking in human lives. It seems that a lot more money can be made from weapons than from anything else.
One cannot talk about the demobilization of combatants in Angola and elsewhere, about reintegrating these people into civil society, about the return of refugees or about national reconciliation while arms-trafficking continues unabated. UNITA would never have dared violate the sanctions unless they had outside support for this. A lot of money is made from this arms-trafficking.
Having said this, I would also like to ask Ambassador Fowler some questions regarding the work of this important Committee. Did Ambassador Fowler discuss the matter of cooperation with all the Governments and bodies with which he met? Did he discuss relations between them and the expert panels? Has he received any written confirmation from organizations about how they will cooperate with the expert panels? Has he discussed with some Governments how their companies are violating sanctions against UNITA? Is there any talk about punishing those responsible for violating sanctions? In the view of Ambassador Fowler, how can the Security Council deal with those States and corporations when there is proof that they are violating sanctions against UNITA?
I would like to welcome the convening of this meeting. We believe it is important that the Security Council meets and discusses various issues in public. In particular we welcome this moving further from briefings on thematic issues to discussions of situation-specific issues. I think that the meeting today provides a very welcome innovation, which I hope will be followed in the coming months.
I would like also to congratulate Ambassador Fowler for his report and to express the particular gratitude of my delegation for his hard work and innovative approach, an innovative approach that he developed in addressing the question of sanctions against UNITA.
I do not wish to add anything to the remarks made by various members of the Council on the purpose and nature of sanctions or on the need to make the sanctions effective. I think that this is fairly clear. And it is also clear that the sanctions are an important instrument intended to help in the effort to stop the war in Angola and to bring peace negotiations to a successful stage. What I would like to do is to make a few random remarks regarding sanctions and issues that come to mind when reading the very interesting report of Ambassador Fowler.
I think that one of the thoughts that comes to mind is that it is impossible to overlook the fact that in the past the implementation of the sanctions regime shared the fate of the overall context of the efforts to implement the Lusaka Protocol. Sanctions are an important policy instrument, but they are only one in a series of policy instruments and share the fate of the overall policy approach to a given situation. I think this is something worth keeping in mind.
Secondly, each sanctions regime, in my opinion, is unique, and I think one has to be careful about what degree of generalization it is possible to make on the basis of an experience with a particular sanctions regime. The content of the measures varies very widely. The level of control by Governments over the prohibited activities is not the same with different sanctions regimes. The relevance of intelligence data and other factors varies again from one situation to another. To give an example, flight bans against a State may be less difficult to enforce than, for example, the prohibition of diamond selling. There are inherent differences here, and I think that the Council has to be very careful in understanding and fully appreciating those differences — and, of course, in recognizing the need to make additional efforts when additional difficulties arise.
There is, however, one common denominator in all efforts to implement sanctions regimes. The cooperation of States is of critical importance. States need to cooperate with the Security Council, with its sanctions committees. And, as Ambassador Andjaba said before, there are States that may need particular assistance in ensuring that their cooperation is adequately effective. Of course these are matters that require innovative proposals, such as those made by Ambassador Fowler, but also strong commitment and persistence on the part of the Security Council and of the United Nations more generally.
We are grateful to Ambassador Fowler for his recommendations, which, I think, provide another important innovation for the Council’s method of work. We can support many of these recommendations, and there are some that, in our opinion, will require some further study and discussion. I understand that the recommendations will be discussed by the panels and by the sanctions Committee. I also agree with Ambassador Andjaba, who spoke about the possibility of having a more detailed discussion on some of these recommendations at a later stage in the Council itself. I think Council members should be fully aware and fully involved in the process of refinement and implementation of these recommendations. There is, I think, a good case for making these recommendations a subject for subsequent discussions in the Security Council.
I would like to mention just two examples. There may be more. As regards all the possible improvements in the area of border monitoring, the United Nations has had experience with border monitoring in earlier sanctions regimes. I think it would be interesting to see in what ways those experiences may be useful in developing a new approach regarding UNITA, based on the recommendation of Ambassador Fowler. The questions related to the diamond industry and diamond trade are, I believe, very new for the Security Council. Maybe implementation of those recommendations will require a more continuous involvement on the part of the Security Council.
There may be other matters of this sort, and I do not want to give an exhaustive list at this stage, but I think that there is a good case for more intimate involvement of the Security Council in the process of the discussion and refinement of the recommendations.
Finally, I think it would be appropriate to say at least one word on the future role of the Secretariat. An expansion of demands regarding sanctions policy places additional burdens on the Secretariat. We all know that the Secretariat works on a variety of sanctions committees with extremely limited resources. I think that as we proceed with the new approach we need to keep in the mind the very legitimate needs of the Secretariat and give due attention to possible improvements and expansion in that regard.
I thank the representative of Slovenia for his kind words addressed to my delegation.
I shall now make a statement in my capacity as the representative of Malaysia.
My delegation expresses appreciation to Ambassador Fowler, Chairman of the Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) for his comprehensive briefing on the work of the Committee, of which I am honoured to be one of his Vice-Chairmen. As have other members, we welcome today’s open briefing on a subject of tremendous interest to the larger membership of the Organization. Malaysia is particularly pleased that this open briefing takes place under its presidency. We congratulate Chairman Fowler on his two recent extended visits overseas, to Africa and Europe, to raise the profile of the work of the Committee, which in our view is important.
Malaysia strongly supports the efforts made by the Chairman of the Committee on the critically important issue of making sanctions against UNITA more effective. We are entirely in agreement with the Chairman’s observation that sanctions are not punitive in intention or design, but are intended to establish the conditions for a resumption of political dialogue to achieve a durable resolution of the conflict. In this regard, we believe that new and radical means are needed. The Committee and the Council will continue to review UNITA’s willingness to engage in political dialogue and will deliberate on the sanctions accordingly. We continue to believe that it is only through dialogue, compromise and accommodation, and not through continued military hostilities, that the conflict will be resolved and peace restored.
It is an open secret that, thus far, sanctions against UNITA have had limited impact. Clearly, more effective measures are needed, covering both the demand and supply aspects of the problem, as Chairman Fowler has indicated in his report. It is for this reason that the Chairman of the Committee travelled not only to Africa, but also to Europe. As Committee Chairman, Ambassador Fowler has proposed a set of 19 measures to strengthen the Committee’s work. His recommendations deserve serious study and concentration by the Council. We find particularly appealing, for example, his Recommendation 17, calling on the World Customs Organization to work with the sanctions Committee and its experts panels in the implementation of Council-imposed sanctions. If implemented, this should prove to be a particularly effective instrument.
My delegation is gratified that Ambassador Fowler was able to address the seventeenth ordinary session of the Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in Algiers in his capacity as Chairman of the 864 Committee. This demonstrates the seriousness which African countries attach to the issue. This seriousness is further exemplified by the draft decision adopted by the OAU Council of Ministers reaffirming the unwavering support of that organization for the relevant Security Council resolutions and appealing to all OAU member States to work strenuously for the implementation of Security Council resolutions relating to sanctions against UNITA.
The Security Council is determined to play its part in rendering the sanctions more effective. In this regard, the Council had decided, through its resolution 1237 (1999), to establish two expert panels to collect information on the sources and methods of violations of Council-imposed sanctions against UNITA and to recommend measures to end these violations and to improve the implementation of the sanctions. We look forward to the final establishment of the expert panels soon and await their interim reports.
I now resume my functions as President of the Council.
I shall now give the floor to Ambassador Fowler once again, to respond to some of the comments and questions posed to him and perhaps make some concluding remarks, if he so wishes.
Thank you very much, Mr. President, and really, a very warm thank you to all colleagues on the Council for their kind words to me and my delegation as to the task we are all doing. We could not be doing any of this if we did not have this enormously strong support from the Council. Your encouragement today and many, many times previously has been the fuel on which we have been moving. I think that very encouragement ought to send a pretty strong message as to our collective intention. I thank you all for it.
I might note that the basis for much of our work is the Secretary-General’s report last year on the causes of conflict and the promotion of a durable peace in Africa (S/1998/318), which I think is one of the most innovative things the Council has done in many years. Of course, Canada was not on the Council and can take no share of responsibility for that excellent initiative. That report, to a significant extent, told it like it was and provided the context in which we are working.
I have made no secret of the fact, Mr. President, that I very much wanted this assignment when we were elected to the Council, because we believe firmly that if one really wants to get to the sources of conflict in Africa, one can probably start very usefully with Mr. Savimbi. UNITA has had a destabilizing influence throughout central and southern Africa for decades, and I believe it is truly incumbent upon us in this Council to stop this as best we can. That struck me as a pretty good thing to do from a Security Council seat.
Many colleagues have suggested that there are recommendations we have made that can be implemented now, or soon. I agree completely, and our intention is to start immediately working within the sanctions Committee to bring recommendations to the Council for specific action or measures whenever that action is right. In other words, we do not feel at all constrained to wait the six months until the panels have reported or for any other thing. If something is right and something deserves to be done, we will recommend that it be done. A number of colleagues — Ambassador Andjaba, Ambassador Türk and others — have suggested that there are other things that need work, not only on the panels, but among ourselves to make sure that we have a clear understanding of exactly the kind of thing we want to do and the way we want to do it. That will take more time, and we will work on those things as we proceed.
Many colleagues have talked about the panels and asked what my intentions are and how we will proceed. My intention is to write to members of the Council this afternoon to recommend the 10 names I will propose. I will identify the specific functions for each of those 10, give a brief synopsis of the curriculum vitae of each individual and, on a no-objections procedure, ask you to agree. When you have agreed — within a very short period of time, I hope — I will then simply write to you, Mr. President — bearing in mind that there may be another Mr. President by the time that letter gets written — and suggest that an appropriate document be circulated with the list of the panel members and stating the fact that they will immediately begin their work. My attention is to ship a great pile of documents to each of those 10 members so they can read into the subject over August, to hold a three-day meeting of the panel members at the end of August and assist them in establishing a work plan for the six months, and to set up a series of meetings here and elsewhere, certainly in Africa. Then, of course, there will be a final, long meeting to develop the report, early next year. So those are my intentions with respect to the panels, and therefore I think we are right on the edge; there are just a couple of details we are waiting for concerning a couple of individuals, and I expect to get those imminently.
With respect to proposals heard today, both Ambassadors Burleigh and Granovsky spoke of the need to update and keep current the list of named individuals subject to specific sanction with respect to financial transactions and travel. I must admit, I think that is absolutely accurate; I probably should have included that in our report. We did hear that kind of thing in our travels, mention of a specific individual, for instance, and why this person was not on our list. I think one of the first things I will do is ask the panels to look at those lists and to make sure that we cast our net as widely as possible, to ensure that all the right people have been included and to continue to encourage all countries to do as Ambassador Burleigh has indicated the United States Government has done, which is to bring in very specific penalties relating to those who assist in the violation of sanctions.
Ambassador Greenstock raised a couple of questions relating to the fact that close cooperation with the Secretariat will be vital. Of course, I very much agree with him. We will be working closely with Mr. Stephanides and his colleagues in the Department of Political Affairs and with the Department of Peacekeeping Operations with a view to ensuring, ideally through a continuing United Nations presence in Luanda, that we remain in very close touch with the Government of Angola on all of these issues and that the Government of Angola is aware of what we are doing and why and how we are doing it and that it feeds information to us about what is happening on the ground. Above all, insofar as we are seeking to manage the arms available to UNITA, we need to be kept very closely abreast of information about the arms that are available to UNITA and those that they are encountering in the field and other such issues.
Ambassador Greenstock also asked a question about further travel and my own specific intentions with respect to such travel. I suppose that I should note that my Government was under the impression that election to the Security Council meant that I would be sitting around this table dealing with weighty geostrategic issues, and when I announced my holiday intentions they said, “Well, what were you doing in May and July of this year, and why do you want to take holidays now?” On a more serious note, the Canadian Government could not have been more supportive of our sanctions endeavours, and I should like to take this opportunity to thank my own Government for that steadfast support.
My intention is to remain fairly close to this table and to the panels and to work with them. There is a lot of further travel to be done. Specifically, there are a number of countries in Central and West Africa that I was unable to visit but which I hope the panels will arrange to visit. There are a number of other countries in Eastern Europe that should be visited in the context of our concern about weapons flowing to UNITA. There will be other visits — I may make a couple of short ones. But in the main I will be working with the panels, and the members of the panels will be doing the further travel and investigation.
Ambassador Buallay asked some questions about the arms trade generally and what we could do to better manage it. That is probably the largest issue impacting on peace and security and on our fundamental mandate that I can think of. Both the licit and the illicit trade in arms — small, medium and otherwise — is a vexing and complex issue, and there are a number of important ongoing initiatives. Under-Secretary-General Dhanapala is pursuing a number of interesting ideas relating to that issue. The European Commission has launched a number of initiatives. I know that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is considering some. We will be working with all these people in an effort to bring that thinking to bear on our very specific issue here.
I wish to note, en passant, that during our meetings in Kiev we were informed that in 1989 40 per cent of Ukraine’s workforce worked in the arms business. That number is now 25 per cent. I believe that if we looked closely at a number of countries, we would see that an enormously high proportion of the industrial effort of those countries is devoted to the arms business — and those arms are going somewhere. It is an enormously profound issue of huge consequence to which we must give our full attention. I have indicated very clearly in the report before the Council that the Government of Ukraine was adamant that it is not sanctions-busting. I have also been Ancient Mariner-like in my urging of countries to provide information relating to sanctions-busting, and until we have firm information in that regard we cannot proceed to the question of what to do about sanctions busters.
The first responsibility, of course, lies with Member States. When they join this Organization, all Member States pass legislation, often called the “United Nations Participation Act”, or something similar, under which those new Members of the United Nations undertake to abide by Security Council resolutions and to pass appropriate legislation to give effect to Security Council resolutions. One of my persistent messages is to remind countries — and this is a very good occasion to do it again, and thank you for giving me the occasion — that the responsibility for enforcing Security Council sanctions is that of individual Member States. Individual Member States are supposed to have that legislation, regulation or decree in place so that they are in a position to do that. Secondly, through the President of the Council or the Chairman of the Security Council Committee, we can urge delinquent countries to improve their practices in this respect, and, ultimately, we can embarrass them from the Council. But the primary responsibility must lie with individual Member States.
I do not have written commitments with regard to indications of willingness to cooperate with the panels, but I have received forceful and enthusiastic oral commitments, in which I have every faith, from all the countries I visited that they will work closely with the panels and provide us with the kind of information that we have been seeking.
Ambassador Türk noted that all sanctions regimes are different. I could not agree more. I believe that there are a few lessons learned. Ambassador Dejammet and others mentioned that there are obviously crossovers with diamonds. Indeed, there might be slightly larger crossovers with other substances and precious materials generally. In fact, whether or not they were designed to be so, the sanctions invoked against UNITA are exactly the kind of focused sanctions that many of us have been talking about as the direction in which the Council should go, as opposed to the broad, pervasive, comprehensive sanctions that do such huge collateral damage.
I believe that it is fair to say that the sanctions that we have introduced have not significantly damaged Angola’s neighbours and have been focused very much on a single purpose. They have not been as strenuously enforced as they should be, and we are working on that. But they are the kind of sanctions that we have been talking about moving towards, and I agree completely with Ambassador Türk that in our application of those sanctions we need constantly to apply triage or prioritization so that we do not expend our effort equally, making a huge effort in areas likely to produce very little return while neglecting areas where the fastest return could be achieved.
Having said that, I do not believe that we can neglect any area. But we must keep such prioritization very much in mind; that, certainly, is my intention. In that regard, I make no secret of my own belief that, while we have to take the actions about which I have spoken with regard to diamonds — and we will do so — it is possible to deny arms to Mr. Savimbi. It is certainly within the collective capabilities of all of us around this table to do so. I hope that we can do so.
I do not know whether I have forgotten anything. If I have, I hope that there will be lots of opportunities for members to remind me of it.
Once again I should like to thank you very much, Mr. President, for arranging this meeting and for giving me this opportunity to make my pitch.
I thank Ambassador Fowler, Chairman of the 864 Committee, for the clarifications and answers he has provided and for his additional remarks.
There are no further speakers on my list.
The Security Council has thus concluded the present stage of its consideration of the item on its agenda.