Monthly Action Points (MAP) for the Security Council: June 2017

For June, in which Bolivia has the presidency of the UN Security Council, the MAP provides recommendations on the situations in Colombia, Cote d’Ivoire, Darfur, Mali, Somalia, and Syria.

Colombia

As the Council considers a report on the implementation of the mandate of the UN Mission in Colombia, discussions should reflect the complexity of the current situation with regards to the increase of death threats against, and killings of, human rights defenders, social leaders, including Afro-descendant and Indigenous community leaders, and the expansion of organized crime and paramilitary groups threating communities in areas recently vacated by FARC-EP and areas surrounding the UN Mission. Despite progress in implementing the Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (MVM), more efforts are needed in order to accelerate the implementation of security protocols laid out in the peace agreement to prevent the escalation of new forms of armed violence and enhance protection, particularly in Afro-descendant and Indigenous territories affected by the demobilization of FARC-EP. As conveyed by civil society organizations (CSOs) during the recent Security Council field mission to Colombia, there remains an urgent need to maintain the presence of UN humanitarian agencies to monitor and report human rights violations during the implementation phase of the peace agreement, and to strengthen the role of the second UN mission in terms of security and protection of FARC-EP members once reintegrated in civilian life and the security of the receiving communities. As the Council discusses the situation in Colombia, the following should be considered:
  • The UN Mission in Colombia should be encouraged to continue its positive practice of regular engagement with CSOs; there should be regular consultations at all levels, particularly with Afro-descendant, Indigenous and rural women’s groups. The inclusion of information on CSO consultations in Secretary-General reports (S/2017/252; S/2016/1095) is good practice and should be continued.
  • The mandate of the second UN mission should include provisions for gender mainstreaming across the mandate of the mission, and regular consultation with CSOs, including women’s groups, as well as ensure gender parity amongst staff within the mission.
  • Council members should request information about the efforts by the Government to respect free, prior and informed consultation and consent of Afro-descendant and Indigenous communities, in accordance with ILO Convention No. 169, before passing legislation pertinent to the implementation of the peace agreement that could impact Afro-descendant and Indigenous Peoples rights. Relatedly, Council members should inquire about the measures undertaken by the Government to support the High-level Special Body with Afro-descendant and Indigenous Peoples, established in accordance with the Ethnic chapter, to monitor the implementation of the peace agreement in Afro-descendant and Indigenous territories.
  • Council members should request information about Government efforts to adopt measures and budget allocation to support rural women’s peace initiatives and their participation in economic and policy decisions that promote women empowerment in peace consolidation processes (SCR 1889 (2009)).

As the Council considers a report on the implementation of the mandate of the UN Mission in Colombia, discussions should reflect the complexity of the current situation with regards to the increase of death threats against, and killings of, human rights defenders, social leaders, including Afro-descendant and Indigenous community leaders, and the expansion of organized crime and paramilitary groups threating communities in areas recently vacated by FARC-EP and areas surrounding the UN Mission. Despite progress in implementing the Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (MVM), more efforts are needed in order to accelerate the implementation of security protocols laid out in the peace agreement to prevent the escalation of new forms of armed violence and enhance protection, particularly in Afro-descendant and Indigenous territories affected by the demobilization of FARC-EP.

As conveyed by civil society organizations (CSOs) during the recent Security Council field mission to Colombia, there remains an urgent need to maintain the presence of UN humanitarian agencies to monitor and report human rights violations during the implementation phase of the peace agreement, and to strengthen the role of the second UN mission in terms of security and protection of FARC-EP members once reintegrated in civilian life and the security of the receiving communities. As the Council discusses the situation in Colombia, the following should be considered:

  • The UN Mission in Colombia should be encouraged to continue its positive practice of regular engagement with CSOs; there should be regular consultations at all levels, particularly with Afro-descendant, Indigenous and rural women’s groups. The inclusion of information on CSO consultations in Secretary-General reports (S/2017/252; S/2016/1095) is good practice and should be continued.
  • The mandate of the second UN mission should include provisions for gender mainstreaming across the mandate of the mission, and regular consultation with CSOs, including women’s groups, as well as ensure gender parity amongst staff within the mission.
  • Council members should request information about the efforts by the Government to respect free, prior and informed consultation and consent of Afro-descendant and Indigenous communities, in accordance with ILO Convention No. 169, before passing legislation pertinent to the implementation of the peace agreement that could impact Afro-descendant and Indigenous Peoples rights. Relatedly, Council members should inquire about the measures undertaken by the Government to support the High-level Special Body with Afro-descendant and Indigenous Peoples, established in accordance with the Ethnic chapter, to monitor the implementation of the peace agreement in Afro-descendant and Indigenous territories.
  • Council members should request information about Government efforts to adopt measures and budget allocation to support rural women’s peace initiatives and their participation in economic and policy decisions that promote women empowerment in peace consolidation processes (SCR 1889 (2009)).

Côte d'Ivoire

As the UN peacekeeping mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) completes its drawdown and transitions functions to the UN Country Team (UNCT), it is imperative that all women, peace and security (WPS)-related tasks and activities are shifted in a way which ensures there is continuity and minimal disruption. Council members should ask about the transition of these projects in any briefings and discussion. Finally, in line with the Secretary-General’s recommendations (S/2017/89), the Council should continue to urge all stakeholders, including the Government, to strengthen and support national institutions aimed at promoting and protecting human rights, and combat impunity for all violations, including sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV).

Darfur

In the renewal of the mandate of the UN Hybrid Operation mission in Darfur (UNAMID), the Council should maintain the current provisions related to WPS (S/2007/307/Rev.1, paras. 55(c)(v), 55(c)(vi); SCR 2296 (2016), OPs 4, 14, 21, 23, 24, 30) and further strengthen the mission’s role in supporting women’s participation in peace processes, and in the establishment of security arrangements and transitional justice mechanisms. Any WPS-related tasks undertaken in collaboration with the UNCT should remain fully supported as priorities. Further, the Council should call for the full and rapid implementation of the mandate through the deployment of qualified women’s protection advisers (WPAs), and call on the swift approval of visas for all UN staff. It is crucial for UNAMID to incorporate a gender lens when assisting the large number internally displaced persons, including in its provision of services to survivors of SGBV. Finally, it is essential that the Council reinforces the importance of effective implementation and fulfilment by UNAMID of its protection of civilians’ mandate.

Mali

In its renewal of the mandate for the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), the Council should ensure all existing WPS-related provisions are maintained (SCR 2295 (2016), OPs 19(a)(v), 19(b), 19(c)(iii), 19(f)(ii), 26). As per the recommendations of the Secretary-General (S/2016/1137, S/2016/819), the Council should call on the Government and all stakeholders to actively ensure the participation and leadership of women in every aspect of implementation of the agreement, as well as all political and reconciliation processes. There should be continued capacity-building and support for elected officials, as well as future candidates by the UN and other stakeholders, including technical support from MINUSMA (CEDAW/C/MLI/CO/6-7). Finally, the Council should call for strengthened access to justice and advancement of current judicial proceedings to ensure crimes, including SGBV, are fairly adjudicated in a timely manner.

Somalia

In line with the recommendations of the Secretary-General (S/2017/404), the Security Council’s renewal of the mandate of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) should expand upon its existing WPS provisions (SCR 2158 (2014), OPs 1(d)(i), 1(d)(iii), 1(d)(iv), 1(e)(iii)), 12; SCR 2232 (2015), OP 33; SCR 2275 (2016), OP 4)) to better integrate the WPS agenda, beyond protection, by including provisions which require UNSOM to:
  • Take fully into account gender considerations as a crosscutting issue throughout its mandate.
  • Support women’s participation in all peace and security processes, including political and electoral processes and the security sector, through capacity-building and efforts which challenge gender norms that restrict gender sensitive behaviors within these institutions.
  • Monitor and report on human rights violations, including SGBV and targeting of human rights defenders.
  • Reinforce the importance of strengthening accountability in the security sector, and underline UNSOM’s role, in collaboration with African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and the Government, in fully implementing the Secretary-General’s Human Rights and Due Diligence Policy (HRDDP).
  • Regularly consult with CSOs, including women’s groups.
Further, in the context a new government in Somalia, created in March 2017, and the London Conference on Somalia held in May 2017, the Council should underline the importance of embedding respect for and promotion of fundamental human rights norms, including women’s rights, throughout all institutions and policymaking processes. The Council should strengthen its call on the Government to ensure all consultative processes are inclusive and ensure robust participation of diverse women and women’s groups (S/2016/27) across different levels of decision making. In achieving this, the Council should call upon all relevant stakeholders to take concrete actions that protect women from risks of intimidation, harassment and false accusations that are used as a means to discredit their reputation, and are among the key barriers to women’s participation in public offices. Finally, the Council should request information and analysis on the differential impact of terrorism and violent extremism on the human rights of women and girls, as well as on the UN efforts to ensure the participation and leadership of women and women’s organizations in countering terrorism and violent extremism (SCR 2242 (2015), PP, OP 13). Active efforts should be taken to ensure that these strategies do not put women at risk or undermine the peacebuilding efforts of local women’s groups, rather that these be informed by gender-sensitive risk analysis that considers the risks women and women’s rights groups are exposed to if they are expected to become either informants or to counter recruitment of their male family members.

In line with the recommendations of the Secretary-General (S/2017/404), the Security Council’s renewal of the mandate of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) should expand upon its existing WPS provisions (SCR 2158 (2014), OPs 1(d)(i), 1(d)(iii), 1(d)(iv), 1(e)(iii)), 12; SCR 2232 (2015), OP 33; SCR 2275 (2016), OP 4)) to better integrate the WPS agenda, beyond protection, by including provisions which require UNSOM to:

  • Take fully into account gender considerations as a crosscutting issue throughout its mandate.
  • Support women’s participation in all peace and security processes, including political and electoral processes and the security sector, through capacity-building and efforts which challenge gender norms that restrict gender sensitive behaviors within these institutions.
  • Monitor and report on human rights violations, including SGBV and targeting of human rights defenders.
  • Reinforce the importance of strengthening accountability in the security sector, and underline UNSOM’s role, in collaboration with African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and the Government, in fully implementing the Secretary-General’s Human Rights and Due Diligence Policy (HRDDP).
  • Regularly consult with CSOs, including women’s groups.

Further, in the context a new government in Somalia, created in March 2017, and the London Conference on Somalia held in May 2017, the Council should underline the importance of embedding respect for and promotion of fundamental human rights norms, including women’s rights, throughout all institutions and policymaking processes. The Council should strengthen its call on the Government to ensure all consultative processes are inclusive and ensure robust participation of diverse women and women’s groups (S/2016/27) across different levels of decision making. In achieving this, the Council should call upon all relevant stakeholders to take concrete actions that protect women from risks of intimidation, harassment and false accusations that are used as a means to discredit their reputation, and are among the key barriers to women’s participation in public offices. Finally, the Council should request information and analysis on the differential impact of terrorism and violent extremism on the human rights of women and girls, as well as on the UN efforts to ensure the participation and leadership of women and women’s organizations in countering terrorism and violent extremism (SCR 2242 (2015), PP, OP 13). Active efforts should be taken to ensure that these strategies do not put women at risk or undermine the peacebuilding efforts of local women’s groups, rather that these be informed by gender-sensitive risk analysis that considers the risks women and women’s rights groups are exposed to if they are expected to become either informants or to counter recruitment of their male family members.

Syria

As per our previous recommendations, in its consideration of the report on the humanitarian and political situation, the Council should call for gender-sensitive humanitarian aid strategies and women’s full and meaningful inclusion in all stages of the peace process. The Council must call on the Office of the Special Envoy for Syria to strengthen and enhance the role of the Syrian Women’s Advisory Board in the peace process, and ensure its framework for operation promotes accountability for human rights violations. Additionally, the Office’s process for collection and dissemination of information must be transparent, preserve the representative nature of information sourced, and carried out in cooperation with CSOs through engagement with local sources. Finally, Council members should inquire further information about the increasing issue of forced displacement of civilians and demographic changes in besieged areas as part of a ‘local agreement’ between the Government of Syria and local representatives, and measures undertaken to ensure that displaced populations are able to safely return to their homes should they choose to do so.