The withdrawal of the UN Mission to Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT) is due for completion by 31 December as per SCR 1923 (2010). Given the history of insecurity and human rights violations, there is great concern about a potential ensuing crisis for civilians. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees for example has largely depended on the Mission to provide security for supplies to some 3,500 Sudanese refugees at Sam Ouandja, in CAR. In eastern Chad, the UN has reported continuing human rights abuses, including sexual and gender-based violence. The Council is urged to ensure that:
- The protection of civilians and humanitarian assistance in places previously served by MINURCAT and elsewhere is addressed by the governments of Chad and CAR in order to protect civilians, in particular displaced women and girls.
- The Chad and CAR governments are held to account for any failure to deliver on their protection responsibilities.
- International partners are encouraged to focus on building the capacity of the CAR and Chad authorities to protect civilians and develop an independent and impartial judiciary.
The Secretary-General is due to report on activities of the UN mission and related developments linked to the promotion of security, stability and respect for human rights. The previous report (S/2010/562) did not include any assessment of the particular situation faced by women. The next report should provide information for example on women’s justice and refugee concerns. Little progress has been made in the prosecution of war crimes, in part due to lack of effective witness protection. There are also increasing numbers of forcible returns to Kosovo from UN member states, despite the particular risk of persecution for members from minority communities, victims of trafficking, and victims of war crimes, including sexual violence.
In his last report on the situation in Nepal (S/2010/214), the Secretary-General provided information on the numbers of women within the UN Mission (UNMIN), but no information on the situation for women in Nepal, despite recent political developments. The next report should include detailed information on: cases of sexual exploitation by peacekeepers/humanitarian workers and the effectiveness of instruments to address this; women’s involvement in the development of the new constitution, and how it will address their concerns; women’s role in the justice sector, both the formal and transitional justice processes; what human rights violations women are exposed to and what redress is available for them; and how DDR programs are taking into account the specific needs of female ex-combatants. With the mandate of UNMIN terminating in January 2011, it is important that in the transition, the following are addressed:
- Ensuring all female former combatants are provided with support programs (employment, skill training, reintegration etc).
- Ensuring survivors of gender-based violence have full access to information and conflict relief and recovery programs.
- Increasing resources to ensure basic medical and health care for survivors of conflict at the community level.
- Prioritizing women’s participation in all post conflict recovery programs, especially ensuring adequate representation in the constitution drafting process, the electoral system, the police and the judiciary.
- Instilling further measures towards ending impunity for crimes related to women and children, particularly sexual violence.
- Supporting special women’s hearings by Nepal’s truth and reconciliation commission.
The Council is expected to discuss a number of issues regarding the situation in Sudan, including monitoring the outcome of the referenda, the situation in Darfur and progress of the Doha peace talks. In any action it takes, including in any outcome document, the Council is urged to:
- Ensure that UNMIS is taking action to ensure sexual violence is prevented if there is an outbreak of violence around the referendum. Ensure that women are being given the space and meaningfully engaged in referendum discussions, consultations with women are being prioritized, and participation of women representatives in talks is being stressed.
- Ensure that women’s rights are integrated into political talks and outcomes related to citizenship, security, natural resources, and North/South border deliberations.
- Stress to the Chief Mediator and the Joint Mediation Support Team that concrete action should be taken to ensure women’ssubstantive participation in the Doha talks.
- For Doha, the Security Council should request that the texts of the agreement currently being discussed are reviewed by a senior gender expert, potentially provided by the UN Mediation Support Unit.