Statement by Ambassador Pildegovičs at the formal meeting of the UN Security Council on MINUSMA mandate renewal

08.06.2021. 01:26

Statement by H.E. Mr. Andrejs Pildegovičs

Permanent Representative of the Republic of Latvia to the United Nations in New York

at the formal meeting of the UN Security Council on MINUSMA mandate renewal

7 June 2021


Let me begin by paying tribute to all those brave women and men who continue to serve for the UN and MINUSMA and ensure the implementation of its mandate despite the highly challenging situation on the ground.

We thank you, distinguished colleagues, Special Representative, Excellences for this timely briefing and for sharing this comprehensive overview and evaluation of the current situation in Mali.

It is with deep regret and concern that we follow the recent arrest and forced resignation of the President and Prime minister, which has destabilised the ongoing political transition. Security threats continue to occur, targeting both -national and international forces and threatening the lives of civilians.

Therefore, it is vital that MINUSMA continues to fulfil its mandate and support the implementation of the Agreement of Peace. Latvia fully supports the extension of the mandate for an additional year.

Often the root of the problem lies in the lack of situational awareness and localized intelligence analysis especially when missions are exposed to asymmetric threats. Therefore, we fully support UN efforts to better integrate modern technologies and intelligence capabilities into UN peacekeeping. Our intelligence experts will continue to contribute to MINUSMA [and the European Union Training Mission in Mali].

We welcome the establishment of the task force to counter Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) and the decrease in the number of civilians injured or killed by explosive incidents. Still, we remain deeply concerned by the numbers, showing that 25 of 68 IED used in Mali since January were against MINUSMA.

Peacekeeping is vital to ensuring that the universal principle of human rights is respected, especially by monitoring compliance, reporting violations and assisting victims. In this regard, we are deeply concerned by the continuing human rights violations and abuses in central and northern Mali. They are unacceptable and must be investigated. We need to continue to implement the Women, Peace and Security agenda, as well as deploy gender advisors and well-trained child protection focal points that are crucial for ensuring the effective monitoring and reporting of grave violations.

We believe that given the meaningful and constructive role that women take in peacekeeping and peace processes it is of utmost importance to increase their enrollment. Latvia fully supports the aspirations of the UN and the African Union to empower women in political transitions.

Successful operational activities in close cooperation with local counterparts strengthen the trust of local populations. Therefore, we believe it is crucial to continue the implementation of projects aimed at producing integrated actions to prevent intercommunal conflicts, addressing the causes of local recruitment into armed groups and responding to threats caused by COVID-19.

To conclude, we affirm our support to the mediation efforts of the ECOWAS Special Envoy and Mediator to Mali, Goodluck Jonathan, and call for ECOWAS to set up a mechanism to monitor compliance within the transition period. We call for the formation of a new inclusive government, as well as for the continued operationalization of the transition agenda and the promotion of good governance.

Questions to the briefer:

Taking into consideration the latest developments, what kind of post–coup activities you foresee as imperative to support the political transition and stabilization efforts in Mali?

In regards to the continuing human rights violations and abuses in central and northern Mali, we would like to know if any particular constraints contributed to the delays in publishing gender-and human rights-sensitive conflict analysis?

Restrictions and unpredictability caused by the pandemic affected rotations, evaluation and security on the ground. Can you elaborate on some of the limitations you encounter in the mission on a regular basis and do you see any other potential instruments for limiting the use of IEDs and increasing the security of those serving on the ground?