Tag: Niyah

Security Council decides to maintain timber sanctions on Liberia

In a statement to the press, Council President Fayssal Mekdad of Syria said the 15-nation body had been briefed today on recent reports submitted by Secretary-General Kofi Annan and its own the expert panel on Liberia on the possible humanitarian and socio-economic impact of the timber sanctions that went into effect on 7 July.Mr. Mekdad said Council members welcomed the two reports that provided a preliminary, though useful, assessment of the possible humanitarian and socio-economic impact of timber sanctions and noted that the conflict in Liberia during the reporting period made it difficult to obtain an accurate assessment that would enable the Council to decide how best to minimize that effect.”In the context of the rapidly evolving, yet fragile, situation in Liberia,” Mr. Mekdad said, “the members of the Council considered that it was premature to draw definitive conclusions regarding the timber sanctions and their possible impact.” He added that Council members agreed that the concern over the possible use of timber revenues to fuel the conflict in violation of the Security Council resolutions remained valid and, hence, the need to maintain the timber sanctions for the time being.”At the same time, members stressed that the timber sanctions should not lead to a deterioration of the humanitarian situation,” he said, adding that the Council underscored two priority areas – improvement in the security situation and the need for increased humanitarian assistance.”Members of the Council also recognized the important role that a well-managed and transparent timber industry could play in Liberia’s rebuilding and long-term development, and the need to adequately assist the Government of Liberia in that regard,” the Council President said.The members were of the view that the developments in Liberia in the coming weeks and months would be of direct relevance to the Council’s review of the sanctions regime on Liberia, according to Mr. Mekdad.”Once the situation stabilizes in Liberia, the Council would be better placed to consider the issue of timber sanctions and the various possible options for minimizing any impact,” Mr. Mekdad said, stressing that the members also underlined the importance of a review and monitoring arrangement to assess the progress with regard to the desired transition of the timber industry and the need to keep track of the possible impact of the timber sanctions.Finally, he said the Council had welcomed recent positive developments in Liberia, but noted with serious concern the human rights situation and the reports of renewed fighting in some areas, and urged all Liberian parties to the conflict to fully abide by the ceasefire agreement and the comprehensive peace plan signed on 18 August. read more

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