The situation in Angola Letter dated 10 March 2000 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 (S/2000/203).
|(The Presidency changes each month to the next member in alphabetical order)|
|Mr. Wang Yingfan
|Mr. Ben Mustapha
|Sir Jeremy Greenstock
Adoption of the agenda
The situation in Angola
Letter dated 10 March 2000 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 (S/2000/203)
I should like to inform the Council that I have received letters from the representatives of Angola, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Mozambique, New Zealand, Portugal, Rwanda, Spain, Togo, United Republic of Tanzania and Zimbabwe in which they request to be invited to participate in the discussion of the item on the Council’s agenda. In conformity with the usual practice, I propose, with the consent of the Council, to invite those representatives to participate in the discussion without the right to vote, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Charter and rule 37 of the Council’s provisional rules of procedure.
There being no objection, it is so decided.
I welcome Mr. João Bernardo de Miranda, Minister for External Relations of Angola.
The Security Council will now resume its consideration of the item on its agenda. The Council is meeting in accordance with the understanding reached in its prior consultations.
Members of the Council have before them a draft resolution prepared in the course of the Council’s prior consultations, which will be issued as document S/2000/323.
I should like to draw the attention of the Council to the following other documents: S/2000/225, letter dated 15 March 2000 from Gabon; S/2000/228, letter dated 15 March 2000 from Belgium; S/2000/230, letter dated 17 March 2000 from Portugal; S/2000/240, 267 and 315, notes verbales dated 22 and 29 March, and 13 April 2000, respectively, from Bulgaria; S/2000/249, letter dated 24 March from Burkina Faso; S/2000/252, letter dated 24 March 2000 from Uganda; S/2000/256, letter dated 24 March from Togo; and S/2000/283, letter dated 29 March 2000 from Rwanda. Members of the Council have received photocopies of a letter dated 17 April 2000 from Togo, which will be issued as document S/2000/326.
I call on Mr. Robert Fowler, Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) concerning the situation in Angola.
Mr. President, I should like to thank you and the members of the Council who have agreed to this morning’s innovative procedure.
In briefly introducing the draft resolution, which will shortly be formally issued, I would like to emphasize one point: the Security Council’s sanctions against the rebel movement in Angola, UNITA, are now having real impact. The work of the Panel of Experts has contributed significantly to this welcome development. Once again, on behalf of the Council, I thank the Panel of Experts for the enormous contribution that they have made to our work. The Security Council’s adoption of this substantial draft resolution will demonstrate its commitment to ensuring that the sanctions continue to have impact in curtailing UNITA’s ability to pursue its objectives through military means.
The draft resolution would, among its many other features, put in place a seven-month process, at the end of which, in mid-November, the Security Council would consider appropriate action in relation to States it believed to be continuing to violate the sanctions against UNITA. During these seven months, interested States, including those mentioned in the report of the Panel of Experts, would have ample opportunity to bring relevant information to the attention of the sanctions Committee and to demonstrate their adherence to all the exigencies of the sanctions regime.
The draft resolution would also request the Secretary-General to establish the monitoring mechanism proposed by the Panel of Experts. It would be composed of five monitors whose renewable six-month mandate would be to collect relevant information, investigate relevant leads and verify information provided from all sources.
In deciding who had violated the sanctions and what to do about it, the Council would thus draw on three substantial bodies of information: first, the report of the Panel of Experts; secondly, the additional information made available by States; and thirdly, the reports of the independent monitoring mechanism.
The draft resolution before us does not name names or take action against alleged sanctions-busters. This should not be interpreted as any kind of exoneration of any State or States referred to in the report of the Panel of Experts. The purpose of the draft resolution is, instead, to provide all States with an opportunity to answer the allegations of the Expert Panel, to end sanctions violations where they have occurred, and to bring their actions into conformity with the clearly articulated will of the international community. Equally clearly, this draft resolution stipulates that the Council will not continue to stand idly by while its decisions are flouted.
My own hope is that the Security Council will not need to adopt such action. That said, the draft resolution before us makes clear the Council’s willingness to adopt such measures if necessary.
A generation of Angolans has never known peace. The purpose of the sanctions against UNITA is to promote a durable political settlement of the three-decades-long conflict in Angola by requiring UNITA to comply with its obligations, which it freely undertook. The adoption of this draft resolution will constitute a reaffirmation of the Council’s commitment to peace in Angola and a demonstration of our determination to use all of the levers available to us to bring about that peace.
The fact that this draft resolution is being adopted today and that this discussion is taking place today already silently expresses much of the United Kingdom’s message.
We all want to see an end to the decades of misery caused by the conflict in Angola. We all believe that the only way to achieve this is to deprive UNITA of the practical means to continue to wage war. We have all, in previous Security Council resolutions, committed ourselves to sanctions on UNITA in order to achieve that goal.
When a leader and his organization in civil conflict reject peace and ignore the will of the majority of ordinary people, then sanctions are one of the few tools the United Nations has at its disposal to try to make them reconsider. Having decided on a sanctions regime, we must make it work.
I congratulate Canada and thank Ambassador Fowler for the impetus you, Mr. President, and he have delivered to implementation of United Nations sanctions on UNITA. This effort, and the work of the Expert Panel, both solidly supported in practice by the United Kingdom, have already sent an important message: that violators of sanctions will be pursued. UNITA now knows that, even before the Security Council has taken its decisions, law-breaking friends are harder to find, illegal supplies harder to secure and stolen diamonds harder to sell.
Making this draft resolution work will be tough going. It will require a new level of cooperation among Member States, and between Governments and the private sector. It will require technical expertise and political will. The United Kingdom will play its part. While all Member States are affected, the draft resolution places a particular burden on States neighbouring Angola. We very much welcome the commitment which the States of the Southern African Development Community have already expressed to follow up this draft resolution. That is in their interests, because peace in Angola would make a significant positive difference to the region. At the same time, we recognize the burden on them. Some of the measures needed, such as tightening up controls of borders and airspace, will not be easy to implement. As this draft resolution makes clear, the international community needs to consider how it can help.
Today’s draft resolution addresses more than the achieving of peace in Angola. The text, the process which has led to it and, most importantly, the action which must follow from it, also send a forceful message about the seriousness of this Council’s business. We must live up to it.
I thank the representative of the United Kingdom for the kind words he addressed to me.
We are happy to see you, Mr. Minister, once again sitting in the President’s chair.
The protracted armed conflict in Angola is cause for very serious concern, for us and for the entire international community. As a member of the troika of observer States for the implementation of the Angola peace process, Russia confirms its consistent position that responsibility for the continuation of the conflict lies entirely with the leadership of UNITA, headed by Jonas Savimbi, who is refusing to comply with his commitments under the Lusaka Protocol and the demands contained in Security Council resolutions. Given these circumstances, we must further increase pressure on the military and political leadership of UNITA so as to make it comply with the demands of the international community, first and foremost to halt the fighting and return to the track of a political settlement.
Furthermore, we sympathize with the position of the Angolan leadership. We are pleased to welcome the Minister for External Relations of Angola to the Council Chamber today, and we sympathize with his position. Jonas Savimbi has so often broken his promises and agreements and acted in bad faith that he has now lost the right to participate in this process and can have no political future. Jonas Savimbi and his entourage have shown their indifference to the fate of the Angolan people. Because of his uncontrollable lust for power, hundreds of thousands have paid with their lives and borne the full weight of the humanitarian crisis in the country — a country whose subsoil could, indeed, yield prosperity for its people. Foreign citizens have often been victims of his organization, including those who have gone — some under the United Nations flag — to help the Angolan people in their time of trial.
For more than one year, UNITA has been holding prisoner citizens of the Russian Federation, one of whom has died. All these facts make clear that, in UNITA, the Security Council is faced with outright contempt for the will of the international community. There is a conscious, carefully premeditated policy to evade the sanctions introduced by the Council, which were designed to deprive the UNITA military machine of the financial, material and technical input that it needs.
Given these circumstances, therefore, it is of paramount importance to strengthen the effectiveness of control over the current sanctions regime against UNITA. The active efforts being made by the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993), and the efforts of the Chairman of that Committee, Ambassador Fowler, have already had an important positive impact on ensuring greater respect for the sanctions against UNITA. We welcome the report to the Security Council of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1237 (1999), and we participated actively in drawing up the draft resolution that we will be adopting today. Based on the recommendations of that Panel, it will help us to achieve the goals that we have set for ourselves.
We believe that implementation of the draft resolution will contribute to improving the effectiveness of control over the sanctions against UNITA, and it will help to close off the channels used by the leadership of that organization to preserve their ability to continue the war — a war that UNITA has imposed on the people of Angola.
At the outset, I should like warmly to welcome to the Council table the Minister for External Relations of Angola, Mr. Miranda.
The draft resolution that we will be adopting today reaffirms the Security Council’s determination to ensure effective implementation of the sanctions against UNITA. Today, through this draft resolution, the Council will once again send a clear and firm message to Mr. Savimbi and UNITA to put an immediate end to hostilities and to finally fulfil their obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. My country fully endorses that message. Jonas Savimbi’s overwhelming responsibility for the continuation of civil conflict in Angola and his refusal to take account of Council resolutions must be most seriously condemned.
We welcome the fact that, barely a month after the report of the Panel of Experts was issued, the Council will adopt a draft resolution taking on board more than three quarters of the recommendations made by those experts. The draft resolution covers a particularly wide range of issues, including the delivery of arms, fuel, trafficking in diamonds, financial resources and the travel of UNITA leaders. The recommendations put forward in this text are addressed first and foremost to Member States. But they also call for the active cooperation of a variety of players in a number of different arenas, including international and regional organizations, enterprises, professional organizations and experts. This is especially true for the provisions relating to the international diamond trade, the monitoring of financial resources and air transport. The effective implementation of these measures is the responsibility of Member States, but they will have to ensure, in exercising their competency, the cooperation of all the actors concerned.
Each of us will have to support this effort. It will require not only the will, but the means. In many instances, the means are lacking. This is particularly the case with regard to the implementation of certain recommendations of the Panel of Experts, to be endorsed by the Council today, which are addressed in particular to the Southern African Development Community and its member States. The efforts of the countries concerned, especially those in Africa, will therefore have to be supported by the international community. If we are serious in our determination to ensure respect for sanctions, we must not confine ourselves to highlighting violations of sanctions. Naming and shaming is not enough. We must also provide tangible aid wherever it is needed.
The draft resolution would provide for the establishment of machinery for monitoring sanctions. It would also provide for the Council to assess the situation in six months on the basis of the work of the sanctions Committee. We hope that the sanctions Committee will engage in sustained dialogue with the member States in monitoring the implementation of sanctions, exchanging information and receiving their comments. Here again, our goal must be greater efficacy. If the noose around Jonas Savimbi and UNITA is truly to be tightened, we need cooperation and information from everyone. Only a united effort of the international community will allow us to block UNITA’s revenue resources and supply of arms.
Since the report of the Panel of Experts was published, several States have announced steps taken to further investigate shortcomings and, in some cases, correct them. The French delegation welcomes these initiatives, which have clearly already begun to bear fruit. We hope that the Council and the sanctions Committee will be able to acknowledge these efforts in due course. If the embargo has been violated in the past, it is indeed essential that these failings no longer occur and that the sanctions Committee be apprised in real time of any fresh sanctions busting.
We feel that this constructive, pedagogical and united approach, built entirely around the central objective of the full international isolation of Jonas Savimbi and UNITA, will ultimately prove far more productive than a repressive one. In this context, it does not appear to us that the creation of new sanctions against countries that have allegedly violated the old will provide a real solution. It is not by increasing the number of pariah States that we will encourage them to reform their ways, nor would the exponential growth in the number of existing sanctions regimes fail to create management problems at the very moment when we are already having enough trouble enforcing the nine embargoes currently in place. The criteria for choosing violator countries could be subject to numerous challenges. The authority of this Council could well emerge reduced. The draft resolution before us today holds out no such prospect, of which we are glad.
Finally, we hope that the sanctions Committee will, in cooperation with the monitoring machinery, manage to build on the work of the Panel of Experts and to clarify certain information contained in the report submitted by Mr. Mollander. Last March, my delegation raised the issues that we felt needed to be actualized. It would be equally useful for the sanctions Committee better to appreciate the respective importance of UNITA’s various supply networks. This, again, is in the interests of achieving efficacy. If we wish to strengthen the implementation of sanctions, we must do so first and foremost by identifying the main channels through which UNITA receives its arms and acquires its resources.
I thank you once again, Mr. President, for coming from far-away Canada to chair this important meeting. I am delighted to see that you have some members of the Canadian legislature here with you today. We have been lucky enough to have had many members of the United States Congress here with us in the past six months. I am delighted whenever I see members of any national assembly or legislature here. I think it is the essence of the strengthening of the United Nations to do this and I welcome your colleagues from the legislative branch.
The United States will be very pleased to vote in favour of the important draft resolution before us today. We commend Ambassador Fowler, his delegation and the entire Government of Canada for their sustained dedication to this task. Bob Fowler has proved that one can be extremely methodical and very careful, and still accomplish something in the United Nations. I congratulate him for his diligence, his perseverance and his persistence. The Canadian delegation and Ambassador Fowler have set a standard by which other sanctions regimes against non-state actors will be judged.
Our Government has worked closely with the sanctions team under Ambassador Fowler. He has briefed our Government at high levels on this issue in order to explain to us how we might better assist the sanctions regime. I can report today that his efforts with the United States Government directly have been very fruitful.
We also welcome the Foreign Minister of Angola, Mr. Miranda, back to the Council and we look forward to hearing his report. I hope that he will report to President Dos Santos that the Security Council is continuing its vigorous efforts to honour its commitments to Angola.
In the past, UNITA’s ability to evade the three sanctions packages allowed it to defy the will of the majority of the Angolan people and of the international community. UNITA’s sanctions-busting activities, aided and abetted by the parties identified in the report of the Panel of Experts, allowed it to pursue a military option that brought death and destruction to a long-suffering nation.
The people of Angola have waited too long for UNITA’s military leadership to forsake armed resistance and enter into the peaceful democratic life of the country. The road is littered with UNITA’s broken promises. The fundamental expectation of the international community remains the full demilitarization of UNITA, the full extension of state administration to all areas of the national territory and the full demobilization of all armed UNITA personnel. The people of Angola waited four years for UNITA to accomplish these tasks, only to be deceived once again.
However, the four years of the Lusaka Protocol produced a Government of National Unity, integrated armed forces and a multi-party National Assembly. These gains should be safeguarded and developed. The United States is committed to the Lusaka Protocol and its institutions, including the role of the troika of observer States, and to the freedoms guaranteed under the Angolan Constitution. This includes, importantly, the rights of a free press, which are, unfortunately, under threat in Angola today. The issue of a free press is of grave concern to my Government and, despite our support of the sanctions and our efforts to work closely with the Government of Angola, we do not believe we can or should ignore this problem.
Our vote today in support of the draft resolution will underscore the strong Council view that UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi is in defiance of the will of the people he claims to help and represent. The primary cause of the present crisis is Savimbi’s unwillingness to comply with his obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. Mr. Savimbi should read the writing on the wall here in this meeting today. The noose — as one of the previous speakers said — is closing. He should take action on his own to stop the pain and suffering he is causing to the people of Angola. If he does not, he will lose anyway, but at much greater cost to the people of Angola and to himself.
Since his refusal to accept the results of the 1992 election, he has waged a war against the people of Angola. He has exercised veto rights over the political, economic and social life of the country, not because he possesses a superior ideological vision or an electoral majority, but because he has fielded a military force.
Security Council sanctions are designed to erode UNITA’s ability to export diamonds and import military supplies, and I note the high importance we attach to the new undertakings by the Government of Belgium in regard to the diamond issue.
We note the Government of Angola’s call for new elections and the wide support this proposal has received. This shows that the Government understands that all mandates must be periodically reviewed by the people and that the opposition itself is eager to launch into a new campaign. As long as the elections are carried out in an environment of open democratic processes and with appropriate monitoring, we will support them. If all of Angola’s parties are given the political space to operate freely, if the mass media and civil society movements can speak without fear of reprisal, then Angola will be ready for new elections, regardless of what Mr. Savimbi believes or attempts to do.
Keeping sanctions pressure on UNITA will continue to erode Mr. Savimbi’s military options. Of course, unless he sees the handwriting on the wall and ends his performance — his behaviour — it will not happen overnight. But I think the evidence is already showing that the dedication that your country, Mr. President, has brought to this task has made a major contribution. The additional efforts that have been announced recently, plus this very important and excellently drafted Security Council draft resolution, have all made a major contribution. We continue to support your efforts, Sir, and we look forward to working together with you over the next six months, and beyond, in pursuit of the goals the Security Council, speaking on behalf of the international community, has articulated here today.
I would like to thank the representative of the United States for the kind words addressed to Ambassador Fowler and the Canadian delegation. We appreciate that.
The Security Council has for a month now had before it the report of the Panel of Experts established by resolution 1237 (1999) to study violations of the sanctions imposed by the Council against UNITA. The draft resolution before the Council today endorses three fourths of the recommendations of the Panel’s report and is aimed at intensifying the work of the Committee established under Security Council resolution 864 (1993) on Angola, and in particular at enhancing the effectiveness of current sanctions covered in earlier resolutions of the Council relating to the illegal supply of arms, petroleum and petroleum products, the export of diamonds, the freeze on UNITA’s financial assets and on the closing of UNITA’s representation offices and other offices abroad. By adopting the draft resolution, the Council will be strengthening the United Nations sanctions regime against UNITA and demonstrating its resolve to make a positive and concrete contribution to the restoration of peace and security in Angola. It is for these reasons that the delegation of Mali will vote in favour of the draft resolution.
Mali deplores the continuation of the conflict that has now been taking place in Angola for 25 years, for which Jonas Savimbi and UNITA are primarily responsible. The people of Angola have suffered too much from the war; the time has now come for the international community to adopt strong measures to put an end to it. The implementation of the draft resolution we are to adopt at the end of this meeting will help to dry up the income UNITA gets from illegal diamond exports and will substantially limit its acquisition of weapons and munitions, petroleum and petroleum products.
In this connection, I would like to pay tribute to the tireless efforts made by Ambassador Robert Fowler, in his capacity as Chairman of the sanctions Committee on Angola, to contribute to the achievement of a political settlement of the Angolan crisis by diminishing UNITA’s capacity to wage war.
Along the same lines, the establishment for a six-month period of a new monitoring mechanism for sanctions violations will make it possible to give effective follow-up to the results of the report of the Panel of Experts. Those will have lasting effect only if there is control of and some pressure on Savimbi and his entourage. This will also make it possible for the Council to avoid a return to practices of the past.
For these reasons, Mali, which stands in solidarity with the people of Angola in their struggle — and I welcome the presence at this meeting of Mr. Miranda, Minister for External Relations of Angola — is convinced that the draft resolution we will adopt today will enable us to apply more effectively the sanctions regime against UNITA in order to curb and put an end to sanctions violations.
I thank the representative of Mali for his kind words addressed to the Canadian delegation.
The representative of Portugal will make a statement on behalf of the European Union later in this debate. As the Netherlands associates itself fully with that statement, my delegation will limit itself to a few brief comments on the issue under consideration.
The Panel of Experts, in its report on violations of Security Council sanctions against UNITA, concluded that the long-suffering people of Angola need and deserve the support of the international community in the search to bring peace and political reconciliation to that country. Rendering that support is indeed in essence what the Council is doing today by tightening the noose around UNITA’s capacity to defy the international community and bring further misery to the Angolan people.
The draft resolution the Council is to adopt today entails basically two steps that should curtail future infringements of the UNITA sanctions regime. First, it puts in place a new monitoring mechanism that could be an effective instrument in the hands of the Council and the sanctions Committee to oversee the implementation of resolutions 864 (1993), 1127 (1997) and 1173 (1998), as long as that mechanism is allowed to collect, analyse and submit information independently. Secondly, the draft resolution sets a deadline for the Council to consider action vis-à-vis those States considered to be in violation of the terms of the sanctions regime. We are very grateful for the important contribution of the Panel of Experts, and especially that of Ambassador Fowler, to making the sanctions against UNITA more effective.
Even before adopting this draft resolution, we have already seen some remedial effects of the report of the Panel. In this connection, we wish to commend those countries mentioned in the report for the steps taken so far, and we call upon the others to follow suit. In our view, Belgium in particular deserves praise for taking the Panel’s remarks in stride and addressing its recommendations expeditiously and in such a transparent manner. Other countries have got away too easily simply by ignoring the Panel’s request for information. We expect, therefore, that the new monitoring mechanism will pick up where the Panel had to stop and will build upon the information that has been collected so far. Again, we repeat that it is essential for the new mechanism’s future effectiveness that it be able to operate independently. We look forward to receiving the mechanism’s report six months from now.
Our ultimate goal in tightening the sanctions is not so much simply to punish UNITA, but to reduce UNITA’s capacity to wage war and prevent a peaceful solution to Angola’s bloody conflict. UNITA deliberately chose to abandon the road to peace as mapped out by the Lusaka Protocol and left the Government of Angola no option but to seize the initiative militarily. The draft resolution before us is meant to create a situation in which military offensives will no longer be needed to achieve a peaceful solution. That solution is what the Council ultimately should offer to the Angolan people, whose suffering has gone on for much too long.
However, the fact that we hold UNITA responsible for the present situation of conflict and humanitarian misery does not diminish the responsibility of the Government of Angola to make its own substantial contribution to the well-being of its own people. In his report of last week on the operations of the United Nations Office in Angola, the Secretary-General referred to allegations of grave human rights violations on both sides and the dire humanitarian situation in Angola. It proves, in our view, that close monitoring by the international community of both areas of concern is still warranted. The Government of Angola owes that not only to the people of Angola but also to the international community, which today is going to take far-reaching steps to assist the Government in its efforts to pacify the country effectively.
Lastly, our progress in the UNITA sanctions dossier should not obscure the need for the Council, at a later stage, to look into the general problem of conflicts fueled and prolonged by access to minerals.
I should like to thank you, Mr. President and Foreign Minister of Canada, for having once again honored us with your presence here. I should also like to thank the Foreign Minister of Angola, Mr. Miranda, for having once again joined us here today.
A little more than a month ago we met to consider the report of the Panel of Experts on violations of sanctions against UNITA, introduced by Ambassador Fowler in his capacity as Chairman of the Angola sanctions Committee.
The submission of that report had significant impact and we believe it will continue to have positive repercussions. Not only has it mobilized the States mentioned in the report, those in the diamond industry and arms producers, along with neighboring countries and countries in the sub-region, but it has also, as no other single event in the past, raised the awareness of the international community as a whole. For all these reasons, this is an invaluable report.
More or less in parallel fashion, alongside this discussion, a series of exchanges of opinion has taken place on general issues bearing on sanctions which also benefitted from the specific results emerging from the Panel’s work. We believe that both initiatives, whereby formal discussion on sanctions was begun, will enable the Council to incorporate specific measures in its work to improve across the board the use of the tool of sanctions.
Today we are here to take a second step, as important as the first, by adopting a resolution which we believe will strengthen the sanctions regime against UNITA. We hope that thereby a political solution to the conflict in Angola will be promoted.
This draft resolution, which we support in its entirety, contains a series of innovative elements. It recognizes the need to monitor sanctions, establishing for this purpose monitoring machinery with an initial duration of six months which will pursue the work started by the Panel. It stipulates that the Council, after review of the implementation of the measures set out in the resolutions on sanctions against UNITA — that is to say, resolutions 864 (1993), 1127 (1997) and 1173 (1998) — and on the basis of the outcome thereof, will be prepared to take steps against those States that will have violated these sanctions. Likewise, the draft resolution that we are on the verge of adopting contains a series of measures and recommendations aimed at all States relating to diamonds, petroleum, arms, financial measures and travel and representational restrictions on UNITA abroad.
We note with satisfaction that the resolution incorporates a number of different Panel recommendations on the natural resources of Angola, whose very existence and abundance have played a significant role in prolonging the conflict: driving the war and facilitating the buying of arms and fuel and even of political sympathy. Under section B, referring to the trade in arms, we consider of particular importance the appeal to all States to be as diligent as they possibly can in confirming the end users. Under section D, referring to the diamond trade, we urge the imposition of significant penal measures against the illegal possession of diamonds in contravention of resolution 1173 (1998). At the same time we welcome the establishment of a new Certificate of Origin for diamonds by the Government of Angola, which will facilitate better monitoring.
For more than twenty years now, the international community has been striving to achieve a peaceful resolution of the conflict in Angola. Argentina can identify itself with these efforts, as in 1989 we despatched units when the operations of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola got underway. Notwithstanding the successive efforts of the international community, the results were inadequate to put an end to the conflict and to promote compliance with the 1991 "Accordos de Paz" or with the Lusaka Protocol of 1994.
We acknowledge that the continuation of the conflict in Angola is not due to any single factor. Notwithstanding that, we hope that the measures we are adopting today will make it possible to make greater use of the natural resources of Angola for the progress of its people and not for fuelling the conflict, will reaffirm the repudiation by the international community of the violations of the sanctions regimes established by the Security Council, and, finally, will help to move the peace process in Angola forward, renewing political efforts underway to put an end to the conflict.
The Chinese delegation welcomes you to New York, Mr. President, to preside over this open meeting. We would also like to welcome Foreign Minister Miranda of Angola, who is attending today’s meeting.
The question of Angola has dragged on for quite a long time. The twists and turns of the peace process and the grave security and humanitarian situation have not only combined to bring enormous sufferings to the Angolan people but have also seriously affected peace and stability in the region. As it refused to implement the peace agreement, UNITA, headed by Jonas Malheiro Savimbi, should bear the main responsibility for the present situation in Angola. Since the arms and petroleum embargo was applied against UNITA by resolution 864 (1993), the Security Council has adopted a number of resolutions in recent years to expand relevant measures to travel, finance, the diamond trade and many other areas. Unfortunately, these measures have not been implemented effectively, for various reasons. To this day, UNITA has not yet laid down its weapons to take the path of national reconciliation.
Ambassador Robert Fowler of Canada, since his assumption of the chairmanship of the sanctions Committee, has made unremitting efforts to facilitate implementation in earnest by the international community of the sanctions against UNITA. The Security Council Panel of Experts investigating violations of the embargoes has done a great deal of work since its establishment and has submitted a report in this regard, putting forward a series of recommendations. Despite the different responses and evaluations made by different sides, the report undoubtedly played a positive role in enhancing efforts by the Security Council and the international community to strengthen the sanctions against UNITA.
Meanwhile, we should also see that much remains to be done in strengthening sanctions against UNITA. After the expiration of the mandate of the Expert Panel, the international community will still need to monitor violations of the embargoes closely. The Chinese delegation supports the establishment by the Security Council of a new monitoring mechanism to continue the investigation into violations of the embargoes against UNITA and to submit a report and proposals to the Security Council in six months. We hope that the Secretary-General will be able to appoint experts for this monitoring mechanism at an early date, and we would like to call upon all countries to give it their full support and cooperation.
We support Security Council endorsement of some of the recommendations in the Expert Panel’s report through the adoption of a draft resolution, and we hope that this will be truly implemented. We have taken note of the fact that many of the recommendations involve the Southern African Development Community (SADC). It may be said that without the true involvement and commitment of SADC, it will be impossible to implement many of the proposals, and sanctions against UNITA could possibly remain hollow talk. We commend SADC countries for their determination and for their efforts to implement the sanctions against UNITA. At the same time, we are aware of the real difficulties SADC countries face, and we are therefore of the view that the international community should continue to provide SADC with necessary assistance concerning the sanctions against UNITA.
The Chinese delegation strongly appeals to all countries strictly to abide by relevant resolutions of the Security Council, to stop supplying UNITA with weapons or supporting it in any other way and to adopt effective measures to prevent their own citizens from violating the sanctions. We sincerely hope that in six months’ time, when the Security Council next reviews the implementation of the sanctions against UNITA, we will be able to see real and effective results. That would be an important contribution by the international community to the Angolan peace process.
My delegation, Sir, is pleased to see you presiding over another meeting of the Security Council. We also welcome the presence at this important meeting of the Minister for External Relations of Angola, Mr. Miranda.
We would like to thank the Canadian delegation, in particular Ambassador Robert Fowler, for its outstanding efforts to spearhead the work of the Committee established pursuant to resolution 864 (1993). There has been a tremendous shift in the international focus following the commissioning of the Panel of Experts established by the Security Council pursuant to resolution 1237 (1999), and the issuance of its report in document S/2000/203 of 10 March 2000.
We commend Ambassador Fowler for his strong commitment and tireless efforts in transforming the sanctions Committee into an active and robust body, one which is very much at the forefront of the Organization’s attempts to cripple the war-making capability of UNITA.
We once again welcome the report of the Panel of Experts and take note of the conclusions and recommendations contained in it. The report puts forward a set of 39 bold and far-reaching recommendations for the consideration of the Council.
Following on from our deliberations at the open meeting of 15 March 2000, substantial work has been put into the draft resolution before us today, which would give effect to the large majority of the Panel’s recommendations. The draft resolution before us is a very important one. It has the aim of strengthening control of the sanctions against UNITA. It targets UNITA and others found to be in violation of the measures imposed by the Council. In that regard, my delegation fully supports the proposed establishment of a monitoring mechanism composed of up to five experts for an initial period of six months in order to collect additional relevant information and to investigate relevant leads concerning violations of the measures contained in resolutions 864 (1993), 1127 (1997) and 1173 (1998). We agree that the monitoring mechanism should report periodically to the Angola sanctions Committee, and we look forward to the submission of a written report by 18 October 2000. It is our hope that the Secretary-General will be able to appoint the experts expeditiously.
With regard to the trade in arms, the draft resolution encourages States to exercise all due diligence in order to prevent the diversion or trans-shipment of weapons to unauthorized end-users or unauthorized destinations, if such diversion or trans-shipment risks resulting in the violation of measures contained in resolution 864 (1993). This is particularly important given that the Panel’s report highlights UNITA’s military ability successfully to procure weapons with the help of international arms brokers. We agree that stringent measures with regard to proper documentation for the export of weapons are necessary in order to check the flow of illicit arms to UNITA and to help bring an end to its capacity to wage war. Further, we also view positively the invitation to hold conferences of representatives of countries that are manufacturers or exporters of weapons to develop proposals to stem the illicit flow of arms into Angola.
In that regard, it is especially important that the countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) be invited to participate in such meetings. In addition, we believe it is important that SADC countries be provided with both financial and technical assistance by the international community in implementing the relevant recommendations of the Panel of Experts.
With regard to the trade in diamonds, we support the call on States hosting diamond markets to impose significant penalties for the possession of rough diamonds in contravention of the measures contained in resolution 1173 (1998). My delegation wishes to state that it would have preferred the inclusion in the draft resolution of language regarding exploring the lawful seizure of the rough diamonds in question as well as any collateral assets used in the transport of such goods; such language is not included in the draft resolution before us. We would also express support for a call on States to make dealing in illegal rough diamonds a criminal offense; this too is not included in the final text of the draft resolution.
In that connection, we particularly welcome the introduction by the Government of Angola of new control arrangements involving redesigned and reconcilable certificates of origin. Details of this scheme should be provided to Member States; we look forward to a briefing by the Government of Angola on this regime in due course.
Diamonds remain a principal source of funding for UNITA. It is therefore imperative that UNITA’s lifeline be severed.
While supporting the draft resolution’s aim of giving teeth and meaning to the Council’s sanctions, my delegation would like to reiterate its view that any further steps or measures to be meted out to sanctions-busters should be considered very carefully and should be weighed against the seriousness of an alleged breach. We believe that those named in the Panel’s report should have the right to respond to the allegations and to clarify their own roles in the alleged sanctions-busting activities. If those clarifications are not plausible and are not borne out by the facts, the international community and the Council will doubtless draw their own conclusions and take appropriate action.
Nevertheless, we would like to stress our conviction that the Council must act only when it has conclusive evidence of such breaches. We support the 18 November 2000 deadline for an initial Council decision on the matter. That would give ample time for those named to respond to the Panel’s allegations.
For far too long, UNITA has been left to its own devices, violating the measures imposed by this organ with impunity. Essentially, Savimbi knew that the Council seriously lacked the will to enforce the sanctions regime. Those days, we believe, are now gone. With the Panel’s bold report and robust recommendations, and with the adoption later today of the draft resolution before us, those responsible for breaches and transgressions of the sanctions regime will no longer go back to doing business as usual. Malaysia will therefore vote in favour of the draft resolution.
I thank the representative of Malaysia for the kind words he addressed to the Canadian delegation.
Let me at the outset express my delegation’s appreciation to you, Mr. President, and to your Government for convening this important meeting on Angola. The fact that you are presiding over this meeting is clear testimony to your Government’s commitment to contribute to finding a lasting solution to the Angolan conflict. I wish in particular to commend Ambassador Fowler for his commitment and his leadership in ensuring that sanctions against UNITA are enforced. My delegation pledges its full cooperation in the successful resolution of this issue.
Let me also acknowledge the presence of the Minister of External Relations of Angola, Mr. Miranda. We eagerly await his remarks.
The report of the Panel of Experts on violations of sanctions against UNITA was considered in the open debate of the Security Council held on 15 March 2000. At that meeting, we reiterated that Security Council resolutions on sanctions against UNITA were indeed being violated by Member States, corporations and individuals at the expense of the people of Angola, and hence that UNITA was in a position to augment its military strength and as a result continued to sow death and destruction in Angola. In this regard, and in order to add credibility and seriousness to the sanctions resolutions, the Council must take the appropriate measures to curb and destroy UNITA’s capacity to make war.
The Southern African Development Community (SADC), the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and the Movement of the Non-Aligned Countries continue to play an important role in support of the implementation of the Council’s resolutions imposed against UNITA. These organizations have on a number of occasions expressed their concern at the deteriorating humanitarian situation resulting from UNITA’s intransigence and refusal to comply with its obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. Furthermore, they have declared Mr. Savimbi a war criminal who has rendered himself an invalid interlocutor. In particular, we welcome the pronouncements by the most recent meeting of Foreign Ministers of Non-Aligned Countries, held at Cartagena de Indias, Colombia. In our view, it is imperative that the Security Council heed the call made by the Foreign Ministers of the Non-Aligned Movement in this regard.
Today the Council is going to vote on another historic draft resolution — one which this time, if implemented, will help bring peace to Angola and to the region as a whole. Namibia will vote in favour of this consensus draft, but first let me comment on some of its key elements.
First, my delegation considers the establishment of the monitoring mechanism an important factor in this exercise, and it is our sincere hope that the mechanism will receive appropriate support from the Member States and the Secretariat to enable it to accomplish the task ahead of it. It is important in this regard that adequate technical support and financial resources be provided to this mechanism so as to enable it to do its job thoroughly.
Secondly, the Council must stand ready to take appropriate measures by 18 November this year against those who it determines have violated sanctions against UNITA, as stipulated in the draft resolution. It would be unjust and unfair to the Angolan people, who have suffered for too long — more than 500,000 lives have been lost — if this draft resolution became just another resolution. Taking appropriate action against those States, corporations and individuals that are in violation of the relevant resolutions will send a clear message to possible violators that the Council means business. This is the minimum that the Council can do for the people of Angola.
Thirdly, my delegation takes note of the steps announced by the Government of Belgium in support of a more effective implementation of measures against UNITA and indeed welcomes the measures taken by the Diamond High Council in conjunction with the Government of Angola to render sanctions more effective. We call upon Member States and other concerned institutions to assist the Government of Angola in its internal reform process with a view to improving the effectiveness of the implementation of sanctions against UNITA. We also take note of the decisions taken by some Governments, both within and outside Africa, to bring to justice their nationals found to be sanctions-busters.
Another critical issue of great concern to my delegation is the use of mercenaries by UNITA, whose impact has been significant in sustaining the military war machinery of the rebel movement. We call upon States to do their utmost to discourage their citizens from serving in UNITA ranks at all levels. In this regard, we support the issuing of arrest warrants to individuals who are playing key roles in circumventing the Council’s resolutions against UNITA.
Finally, SADC has played, and continues to play, an important role in the implementation of the Council’s resolutions against UNITA. However, it must be stressed that the SADC countries lack the technical and financial capacity to carry out its relevant programmes successfully. Therefore, we appeal to the international community to provide appropriate technical and financial assistance to SADC with a view to strengthening the effectiveness of the sanctions imposed against UNITA. SADC is more than prepared to play its role. However, the assistance of the international community is vital in this regard.
We look forward to continuing to work with the Chairman of the Committee for the success of the work of the Committee and for peace and stability in Angola and in southern Africa in general.
My delegation joins previous speakers in thanking you, Mr. President, for convening this meeting. We also wish to welcome Mr. Miranda, Minister for External Relations of Angola, to our deliberations.
My delegation pays tribute to Ambassador Robert Fowler for his re-energizing of the sanctions Committee established under resolution 864 (1993) and thanks him for introducing the draft resolution before us today. We fully endorse the draft, as we believe that it is important for us to send a strong message that breaches of the Council’s sanctions will not go unpunished.
Already the work of the Panel of Experts has borne fruit, as Governments and others have begun to focus on what they could do to improve the enforcement of sanctions and to curtail existing violations. As the report of the Panel reminded us, the purpose of the sanctions was to provide a peaceful settlement to the conflict in Angola by requiring UNITA to comply with the obligations it undertook and by limiting UNITA’s ability to pursue its objectives by military means.
The Security Council has given UNITA and Jonas Savimbi all opportunities to bring peace to the long-suffering people of Angola. But we must recall that the leaders of UNITA rejected the results of free and fair elections held in 1992. They took advantage of the Lusaka Protocol to regroup their forces, and they were aided and abetted in evading the arms embargo, the travel and financial sanctions and the embargo on diamond exports. Those who aided and abetted UNITA in violating sanctions are equally culpable, along with UNITA, for the humanitarian tragedy in Angola. It is reported that over the past 25 years, some 1.5 million people have lost their lives. There has been a dramatic increase in infant mortality, food shortages and starvation, and the number of internally displaced persons was last year estimated at 1.7 million out of a total population of 12.6 million.
It is in this context that the Security Council, by its action today, will clearly indicate that the international community strongly repudiates the actions of Mr. Savimbi and is determined to cut off his sources of finance and arms. But the measures in the draft resolution with regard to the trade in arms, petroleum and petroleum products and diamonds, and with regard to travel, representation and financial measures, can be effective only if all Member States adhere to the terms of the draft resolution.
The monitoring mechanism is an innovative one, and we believe that it can provide an example for other sanctions regimes. We therefore hope that it will be set up expeditiously in order to allow it to report to the Council by November 2000. We wish to commend the Southern African Development Community countries, and those geographically close to Angola, for the steps they have already taken to tighten the sanctions.
The draft resolution before us has been carefully drafted, providing, as it does, an opportunity for those named in the report to respond before any action is taken against sanctions busters, while at the same time reminding States of the mandatory nature of sanctions imposed by the Security Council. Twenty-five years have gone by. A whole generation of Angolans has not known life without war. We owe it to them to seek to ensure that the riches of their country are used for their economic and social development, and not to perpetuate conflict.