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UN Security Council to highlight collective action to improve peacekeeping operations in March
From:Xinhua  |  2018-03-02 07:00

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UNITED NATIONS, March 1 (Xinhua) -- The UN Security Council has chosen as its centerpiece in March an open debate on the "collective action to improve UN peacekeeping operations," Karel van Oosterom, president of the Security Council for the month of March, said on Thursday.

Starting March 1, the Netherlands took over the presidency of the Security Council from Kuwait.

Karel van Oosterom, permanent representative of the Netherlands to the UN, told a press conference that there will also be two meetings connected to issues of scarcity of natural resources with the first one on the Lake Chad Basin.

The Council will hold its regular quarterly debate on Afghanistan during which a resolution extending the mandate of UNAMA (the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan) is expected to be adopted, he said, adding that the meeting will be held on International Women's Day and may therefore have a specific focus on women, peace and security issues in Afghanistan.

"Council members will follow closely the humanitarian situation in Syria after a resolution calling for a 30-day humanitarian cessation of hostilities was adopted on Feb. 24," he said.

The resolution requested the Secretary-General to report on the implementation of the resolution and the compliance of parties every 15 days.

In addition, Council members will receive their regular briefing on the political developments in Syria by Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura, he said.

Instead of the regular briefing on chemical weapons, there will be an informal interactive dialogue on Syria chemical weapons with the Office of Disarmament Affairs and the Director General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons participating, said the ambassador.

In addition, there will be discussions on several other Middle East issues this month, including quarterly briefing on UNDOF (United Nations Disengagement Observer Force).

Regarding African issues, the Council will have several meetings on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). A briefing, followed by consultations, on the situation in the DRC is planned for early in the month ahead of the adoption of a resolution to renew the mandate of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO).

The mandate of the UN Mission in South Sudan will be renewed in March, according to van Oosterom.

There will also be the regular briefing on the Secretary-General's confidential 30-day report on the deployment of the Regional Protection Force in South Sudan. On Darfur, there will be a meeting on the Secretary-General's report on the African Union/United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID).

According to van Oosterom, the mandate of the Panel of Experts of the 1718 DPRK Sanctions Committee will be renewed.

The Netherlands has, for six times, taken the presidency of the Security Council, with the first one being in 1946 and the latest one in 2000.