The French presidency of the UN Security Council during the month of May 2011 has just ended. Gabon will hold the presidency of the Council for the month of June.
Our presidency was firstly an opportunity to focus on various aspects of the situation in Africa, a continent to which the Security Council devotes a great deal of attention. On May 18, we held a special debate on the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo which enabled us to discuss with the Congolese authorities the various opportunities that must be realized, while the United Nations’ most important peacekeeping operation is deployed in this country.
The Security Council also conducted a mission to East Africa (Kenya, South Sudan, Sudan and Ethiopia), while South Sudan’s independence will be declared on July 9. The renewed fighting in Abyei demonstrates in this respect the extent to which efforts aimed at finding a lasting solution to the conflict are still needed. Lastly, consultations on Somalia were also held at the Security Council.
The French presidency of the Security Council was also marked by several topical issues, notably relating to Libya. In this respect, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court appeared before the Council on May 4 in order to present the initial findings of the inquiry that he is conducting in accordance with resolution 1970 relating to the allegations of crimes committed in Libya after February 15, 2011.
Lastly, several long-term issues that are at the heart of the UN’s concerns were discussed by the Council during our presidency, notably the protection of civilians in armed conflict, which was the subject of an in-depth debate, and the development of civilian capacities in post-conflict countries, based on the report presented by Jean-Marie Guéhenno.