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Ban Asked To Renew UN Panel Monitoring Liberia

Security Council asks Ban to renew UN panel monitoring Liberia sanctions

18 June 2008 - The Security Council has asked Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to renew the mandate of the United Nations panel looking into the issues of diamonds, timber, sanctions, arms and security in Liberia for another six months.

In a unanimously adopted resolution, the Council also requested Mr. Ban to reappoint the Panel of Experts and to make the necessary financial and security arrangements to support its work.

The 15-member body also called on all States and the Government of Liberia to "cooperate fully with the Panel of Experts in all the aspects of its mandate."

The panel was appointed by the Secretary-General in July 2007 to investigate whether UN sanctions against Liberia are being broken, after learning of allegations that former president Charles Taylor may still have access to considerable wealth.

It is also tasked with assessing the implementation of forestry legislation signed into law last October by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, and with gauging the Government's compliance with the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, a mechanism established to keep "blood diamonds" from reaching world markets.

The Council also highlighted the importance of the continuing assistance of the UN's peacekeeping missions in Liberia (UNMIL) and Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI) to the work of the Panel and to Security Council committee monitoring the sanctions on Liberia.

ENDS

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