Sahara Press Service (El Aaiun)

22 February 2013

Algerian Representative to UN - Minurso Ruled Out From UN Peacekeeping Operations Reform

New York — "The United Nations Mission for Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) has been ruled out from the gradual reform of the missions entrusted with the other UN peacekeeping operations," said Algerian representative to UN.

During a general debate of the Special Committee of Peacekeeping Operations or "C-34" held Wednesday in UN headquarters, the Algerian delegate underlined that during the two last decades, the Peacekeeping Operations had considerably progressed, moving from conventional intervention forces to multi-dimensional missions, often operating in complicated and hostile environments.

This reform is due, according to him, to the concern shared by the Member States about the need to bring "an appropriate and effective response to the various conflicts, while preserving and enhancing the conventional tasks of peacekeeping."

Regardless of the different mandates of each mission, the UN peacekeeping operations have a duty to support the stabilization of the situation and to supply the UN Secretary-General, Security Council and the international community with "independent and credible information on the situation on the ground, especially on that of human rights."

In fact, he said, "all the reforms experienced by UN Operations Peacekeeping seem to apply to all missions, except the MINURSO."

In this regard, he regretted that MINURSO "is not even equipped with the mechanism to monitor and prepare reports on human rights situation on the ground, despite the fact that the promotion and protection of human rights have been identified within the UN as an essential element to achieve a lasting peace."

Speaking about this deficiency consequence sometimes tragic, he mentioned the example of the trial of the 24 Sahrawi civilians of Gdeim Izik to highlight that MINURSO, without a mandate of human rights surveillance and the working out of relating reports, "was not able to monitor the situation, during the dismantling of Gdeim Izik camp in November 2010."

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