6898th Meeting (PM)
Resolution 2085 (2012) Stresses Need to Further Refine Military Planning
Affirming that the entrenchment of terrorist and criminal groups in northern Mali posed an urgent threat to that region and the entire international community, the Security Council today authorized the deployment of an African-led mission to support efforts by national authorities to recover the north.
Unanimously adopting resolution 2085 (2012) under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, the Council also requested the Secretary-General to establish, in consultation with the national authorities, a “multidisciplinary United Nations presence in Mali” to provide coordinated and coherent support to the ongoing political and security processes in the country. It would be deployed for an initial period of one year.
The Council tasked the African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA) with helping to strengthen Mali’s defence and security forces, in coordination with the European Union and other partners; supporting the Malian authorities in their primary responsibility to protect the population; transitioning to stabilization activities following the recovery of national territory; and assisting with humanitarian access to northern Mali, as requested. The Council authorized the Mission to take all necessary measures to achieve those tasks, in compliance with applicable international humanitarian and human rights law, and in full respect for Mali’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and unity.
Taking note of the endorsement, by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union, of a strategic concept for addressing the crisis in Mali, the Council emphasized the need to further refine planning before the start of an offensive military operation, requesting all stakeholders to support planning and preparation for deployment, and noting the need for the Council to review such planning before operations began.
The Council also requested the African Union, in close cooperation with other partners, to provide updates, before offensive operations began, on progress in the political process, the training of both AFISMA and Malian security forces, and the Mission’s operational readiness and other critical elements. It urged Member States, as well as regional and international organizations, to provide coordinated support to AFISMA, and signalled its intention to consider providing “a voluntary and a United Nations-funded” logistics support package.
As for the political process in Mali, the Council urged the authorities to finalize a transitional road map towards full restoration of constitutional order and national unity, through dialogue and the holding of credible and inclusive elections. It urged the transitional authorities to put in place a credible framework for negotiations with all northern parties who cut off ties to terrorist organizations, notably Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and associated groups, including the Movement of Unity and Jihad in Western Africa.
Condemning the circumstances that had led to the Prime Minister’s 11 December resignation and dismissal of his Government, the Council reiterated its demand that members of the Malian Armed Forces not interfere with the work of the transitional authorities, expressing its readiness to consider measures against those who undermined peace and implementation of the constitutional order.
Following adoption of the resolution, the Council heard statements by Tiéman Hubert Coulibaly, Mali’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation; Youssoufou Bamba (Côte d’Ivoire), speaking on behalf of the ECOWAS Presidency; and Téte António, who spoke on behalf of the African Union.
Mr. Coulibaly described the resolution as an historic step that affirmed the international community’s commitment to fighting terrorism and organized crime. Mali was committed to fulfilling its obligations under the resolution, to holding dialogue with those groups that renounced their ties to terrorists, and to national unity, he emphasized, thanking all countries, as well as regional and international organizations working to help resolve the crisis.
Mr. Bamba, stressing the seriousness of the terrorist threat in northern Mali, welcomed the fact that the resolution called for political progress to restore constitutional order in Mali, a political track for regaining the north, and the authorization of AFISMA. A logistical support package for the Mission was now needed to ensure its effectiveness, he added.
Mr. Antonio called today’s action a further step in the evolution of the partnership between the United Nations and the African Union. Extending thanks for the Council’s tireless efforts to obtain authorization, he reiterated the African Union’s position that the Mission must complement Malian political efforts for a return to constitutional order and national unity.
The meeting began at 3:25 p.m. and ended at 3:45 p.m.