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Council Condemns Sexual Abuses by Peacekeepers

Security Council Condemns Sexual Abuses by UN Peacekeeping Personnel

New York, May 31 2005 7:00PM

The Security Council today strongly condemned all acts of sexual abuse and exploitation committed by UN peacekeeping personnel, underlining the importance of maintaining zero tolerance for such abuses and advocating their investigation and punishment.

“The distinguished and honourable record of accomplishment in UN peacekeeping is being tarnished by the acts of a few individuals,” the Council declared in a statement read out by its President for the month of May, Ambassador Ellen Margrethe Løj of Denmark.

The statement follows the Council’s consideration of a report prepared by the Secretary-General’s advisor on the subject, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al-Hussein, Ambassador of Jordan, which was endorsed by the report of the UN special committee on peacekeeping. The report calls for the establishment of Personnel Conduct Units in the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) at UN Headquarters and in seven existing missions.

The Council urged that the recommendations of the special committee’s report be implemented without delay.

Confirming that the conduct of troops is primarily the responsibility of countries that provide troops, the Council also recognized that such a responsibility is shared by the Secretary-General and all UN member states. In addition, it said, standards of conduct must be applied to all categories of personnel.

The Security Council, the statement said, would also consider including relevant provisions for prevention, monitoring, investigation and report of misconduct cases in its resolutions establishing new mandates or existing mandates.

Following the issuance of the statement, Prince Zeid was joined by Jean-Marie Guéhenno, the UN’s top peacekeeping official, in welcoming the Security Council’s action. Prince Zeid said that the Council’s approach “fits in very well with the general strategy we have been pursuing with the General Assembly on creating an overall approach in concert with our colleagues in the Secretariat in dealing with this painful and sensitive subject.”

ENDS

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