UNSMIL Mandate Extended

Security Council Authorizes Nine-month Mandate Extension for United Nations Support Mission in Libya, Unanimously Adopting Resolution 2323 (2016)

The Security Council has decided to extend the mandate of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) by nine months, until 15 September 2017.

Unanimously adopting resolution 2323 (2016), the 15-member Council also decided that, in full accordance with the principle of national ownership, the integrated special political mission should exercise mediation and good offices functions to support implementation of the Libyan Political Agreement, consolidation of the Government of National Accord’s governance, security and economic arrangements, and subsequent phases of Libya’s transition process.

Further by that text, the Council decided that UNSMIL should undertake the following tasks:  support key Libyan institutions; support, upon request, the provision of essential services and delivery of humanitarian assistance; monitor and report on human rights; support efforts to secure uncontrolled arms and to counter their proliferation; and coordination of international aid, including by providing advice and assistance for Government efforts to stabilize post-conflict zones, including those liberated from Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh).

The Council encouraged UNSMIL to continue working towards a phased return to a permanent presence in Libya, as security conditions would allow, and to make the necessary security arrangements to that effect.

Following the vote, the Russian Federation’s representative reminded other Council members that, during consultations, he had been in favour of a six-month extension as the optimal time frame in view of weak developments in Libya and the unclear prospect of UNSMIL’s return to the country.  However, some Council members had painted an unjustifiably optimistic picture of the situation, he added.

The United Kingdom’s representative, welcoming the resolution’s unanimous adoption as a strong signal of Council unity in support of Libya, said the mandate was vital a year after the signing of the Political Agreement.  Some progress had been made in the fight against terrorism, with the completion of operations against Da’esh in Sirte, but Libya continued to face a daunting set of challenges, and it was crucial that the international community continue to speak with one voice, he emphasized.

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