Security Council extends mandate of UNs EthiopiaEritrea mission for 6 months

Reaffirming its unwavering commitment to the peace process in Ethiopia and Eritrea, the Security Council today extended for six months the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission to the two countries.The decision to extend the mandate of the UN Mission in Ethiopian and Eritrea (UNMEE) at the troop and military observer levels until 15 September came after the Council considered a report by Secretary-General Kofi Annan covering the mission’s activities since last December. The report highlighted key developments in Ethiopia and Eritrea and gave an update on activities related to the Boundary Commission’s work.By unanimously adopting resolution 1466 today, the Council affirmed the ability of UNMEE to monitor the two countries’ fulfilment of their responsibilities and called on both Ethiopia and Eritrea to cooperate fully and expeditiously with the Mission in the implementation of its mandate.The Council also demanded that the parties allow UNMEE full freedom of movement and remove immediately any restrictions impeding the Mission’s work, as well as ensure the security of UNMEE staff when operating in territories under their control.”On balance, the parties have generally been cooperating well through this process,” Mr. Annan said in his report. “However, it is now time for them to translate their commitments into real action on the ground, namely, the implementation of the 13 April 2002 delimitation decision.”The Council noted Mr. Annan’s concerns regarding full adherence to boundary demarcation-related matters. It urged both parties to fulfil their commitments under the Algiers Agreements and cooperate fully and promptly with the Boundary Commission to enable it to fulfil its mandate.Welcoming the contributions by Member States to the Trust Fund for the Delimitation and Demarcation of the Border, the Council called on the international community to continue to contribute urgently to the Fund in order to facilitate the conclusion of the process. It also called on Member States to continue to provide prompt and generous support for humanitarian operations in Ethiopia and Eritrea with the prevailing drought and worsening situation.

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