UNSC Issues Statement on Deadly Attacks in Mali on Peacekeepers, Two-Tier DPKO Not Yet Addressed

UNITED NATIONS, August 8 (InnerCityPro.com) -- While the UN Security Council on August 8 issued a press statement about deadly attacks on UN peacekeepers in Mali, below as drafted by France, it has not addressed the pattern of UN Peacekeeping under Herve Ladsous operating "two tier" missions.

As ICP has reported on UN Peacekeeping's unseemly two-tier structure, under which in Mali African Ambassadors complain their troops are left in danger, not allowed to use the equipment of NATO members in the UN mission, DPKO chief Herve Ladsous has refused to answer, and Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric has enabled and assisted Ladsous.

But on July 18, Ladsous at an International Peace Institute event to which Inner City Press was not invited said he recruited two Mauritanian intelligence agents but couldn't deploy them in a NATO part of Mali. So Inner City Press on July 19 asked Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, UN transcript here and below. While the UN says it is updating its policies, when Inner City Press on July 22 asked if new German drone in Mali will have their information shared with other peacekeepers, the answer was not "Yes." From the UN transcript:

Inner City Press: you had come back with this answer about in terms of how equipment is shared in peacekeeping missions, specifically in Mali, saying there is some updating of the procedure; so I have seen since then an announcement by Airbus and the German Government that Airbus will be providing and operating a drone for German troops in Mali, presumably with the UN Mission.  And said it said that the procurement was done by the German defence procurement agency VAA and VW and covers a 15-month period.  So I want to know, do contingents that serve in UN peacekeeping, can they bring their own drones?  And, if so, is the information shared with other contingents, for example from Chad and elsewhere, that are serving in the same chain of commands?

Deputy Spokesman:  The basic point, like I mentioned, is that contingents own their own equipment.  How that is handled, like I said, where the UN is currently updating its protocols and procedures and that is designed to address issues of access of information in all UN missions.

ICP Question:  Right, so maybe you don't have an answer to this, but it seems to me they should be able to say it, it has been announced, that these drones will be flying, contracted by Germany, will this information be shared with other contingents?

Deputy Spokesman:  Well, at this point I don't have an announcement to make about the use of the drones, so we will have to see what arrangements are made.  Beyond that, of course, like I said, the entire point of the policy that we're seeking is to make sure that that access to assets and information can be shared better."

While Ban's spokesperson's office never emailed Inner City Press any answer, Inner City Press on July 20 asked about it again and got this admission, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: on Mali, beyond what I asked yesterday, now there is reports of a deal reached in Niger under which the Azawad Group who controlled Kidal.  I wanted to know, first, did the UN have any involvement in this negotiation of the security arrangement in Kidal?  And do you have any answer yet from DPKO [Department of Peacekeeping Operations] about what Mr. [Hervé] Ladsous said at IPI about NATO versus the Mordanian agents?

Deputy Spokesman:  On the question of the agreement of Kidal I don't have any reaction to that at present.  Regarding what you were asking yesterday, I can confirm that the UN's currently updating its protocols and procedures to address issues of access to assets and information in all UN missions.

Inner City Press:  Right. So I'm asking, a couple months ago I asked directly whether the Chadian peacekeepers could use NATO equipment in the possession of the Dutch peacekeepers and it was never answered.  And can I know, from what you have said, is this true it has been a problem for months?

Deputy Spokesman:  I mean, this is an issue that we needed to deal with.  We are not able to speak about particular arrangements by troop-contributing countries, that is not in our ability.  But this is something for which we needed to update protocols and we are currently updating protocols and procedures in order that you will have access to assets dealt with in a better way.

Inner City Press:  But isn't the mission responsible when, for example, the Netherlands contingent deployed to know whether an extremist went under attack by terrorist or extremist forces, whether these can be shared with other peacekeepers?

Deputy Spokesman:  We try to work out things, but, you have to remember, the UN itself is not the owner of this equipment and the UN itself is not the employer of the peacekeeping troops.  These are national contingents in service to the UN and their equipment are equipments by the national contingence.  You know, having said that, what we are trying to do, we do have protocols and procedures in place and we're trying to update those so that the access to assets and information will be shared.

Inner City Press:  When they say same chain that is one on this because it comes up in South Sudan where they say they want the soldiers to be all in the same chain of command, doesn't this somehow imply that you don't have one contingent with much better equipment than the other ones, not sharing it when people are under attack?

Deputy Spokesman:  The point of UN peacekeeping operations is that the peacekeepers coordinate their activities with each other so that they work efficiently together, that's what we try to do.

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attacks that occurred between 5 and 7 August 2016 against the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) in the northern region of Kidal, killing one peacekeeper and injuring another six.

The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences and sympathy to the family of the victim, as well as to the Government of Chad and to MINUSMA. They paid tribute to the peacekeepers who risk their lives.

The members of the Security Council called on the Government of Mali to swiftly investigate these attacks and bring the perpetrators to justice. They underlined that attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security. The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice. They stressed that those responsible for these killings should be held accountable, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with all relevant authorities in this regard.

The members of the Security Council reiterated that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed. They reaffirmed the need for all States to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and other obligations under international law, including international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support for MINUSMA and the French forces that support it. They reiterated their strong support for the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Mali, Mahamat Saleh Annadif, and for MINUSMA to assist the Malian authorities and the Malian people in their efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to their country, including through MINUSMA’s support to the implementation of the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali.  

The members of the Security Council expressed their concern about the security situation in Mali. They noted that the full implementation of the Agreement and the intensification of efforts to overcome asymmetric threats can contribute to improving the security situation across Mali. 

They further stressed the importance that MINUSMA has the necessary capacities to fully fulfil its mandate as renewed by Security Council resolution 2295 (2016).

Leave a Reply