UN Security Council calls for demilitarization of Abyei  

By Tereza Jeremiah Chuei

The United Nations Security Council has urged the Sudan and South Sudan Governments to withdraw their forces in Abyei and demilitarize the contested border area leaving UNISFA.

This comes as the mandate of United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) was extended for another one year (12 months) until 15 November 2023.

UNSC adopted the resolution for the extension of UNISFA mandate during its meeting on 14 November 2022.

In a Statement seen by No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper, the United Nations Security Council urged the government of Sudan and South Sudan to provide full support for UNISFA in the Implementation of its mandate and deployment of UNISFA personnel.

The Security Council further stated that Sudan and South Sudan should facilitate the smooth functioning of all UNISFA bases and JBVMM team sites.

“The Abyei Area shall be demilitarized from any forces, as well as armed elements of the local communities other than UNISFA and the Abyei Police Services when it is gradually established and urges the Government of Sudan and South Sudan and the local communities to take all necessary steps in that regard,” the statement partly read.

It added that the mandate of the UNISFA as set out in paragraph 2 of resolution 1990 (2011) and acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, further decides to extend until 15 November 2023.

UNSC further stated that the last tasks of UNISFA as set in paragraph 3 of resolution 1990 (2011), had further decided that UNISFA should continue to implement that mandate and tasks in accordance with resolutions 2630 (2022) and 2630 (2021).

“Reaffirming all previous resolutions and Presidential statement concerning the situation in Abyei and along the border between South Sudan and Sudan and underlining the importance of the full compliance with the implementation,”

“Reaffirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, Independence, unity and territorial integrity of Sudan and South Sudan,” the statement noted.

UNSC said it recognized that the current situation in Abyei and along the border between Sudan and South Sudan continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security.

“Maintains the authorized troop and police ceilings as set out in paragraphs 4 and 5 of resolution 2609 (2021) and expresses its intention to remain seized of the recommendation in the 17 September 2021 letter of the Secretary-General (S/2021/805),” it continued.

The Council also requested the UN Secretary General to continue providing Information on the progress in the implementation of the UNISFA mandate.

In previous report South Sudan appealed to UNISFA to intensify its operation and prevent recurring attacks in Abyei.

This came in as several attacks were reported recurring in Abyei.

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