4 April 2014

Guinea Bissau: Security Council Urges Holding of Peaceful, Credible Polls in Guinea-Bissau

Photo: RFI
Former president Kumba Yala.

The United Nations Security Council has urged all national stakeholders in Guinea-Bissau to facilitate the conduct of peaceful and credible elections on 13 April, when citizens of the West African nation will participate in long-delayed president and legislative elections.

In a statement issued to the press on Thursday, Council members also urged national stakeholders to respect the results of the polls "as an expression of the will of the people of Guinea-Bissau" in line with the country's agreed electoral code.

"They also called upon them to refrain from any action that could hamper the electoral process and to live up to their responsibilities in the interest of lasting peace and development in Guinea-Bissau."

The statement followed a briefing received by the 15-member body earlier in the day in a closed-door session by Jeffrey Feltman, the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, on the situation in Guinea-Bissau.

The elections, which have been postponed several times, are seen as a crucial step on the path to restoring constitutional order in Guinea-Bissau, which is recovering from an April 2012 coup.

Council members welcomed the successful conclusion of the voter registration process, and acknowledged that funding and preparations for the elections were "well on track."

At the same time, they condemned the episodes of political violence and intimidation in Guinea-Bissau, in particular the kidnap and assault of a member of the Party for Social Renewal (PRS).

In addition, Council members renewed their call on all security services to respect the constitutional order, including the electoral process, and to submit themselves fully to civilian control.

They also urged all elements of Guinea Bissau's political and military leaders "to refrain from attempts to interfere with or influence the electoral process, and to refrain from violence or intimidation of candidates."

Further, they recalled their readiness to consider further measures, as necessary, including targeted sanctions against both civilian and military individuals who undermine efforts to restore constitutional order.

Copyright © 2014 UN News Service. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.