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Cablegate: One Year Renewal for Unipsil; Drugs, Youth

VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0848 2642036
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 212036Z SEP 09
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7200
INFO RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000848

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL UNSC XY SL
SUBJECT: ONE YEAR RENEWAL FOR UNIPSIL; DRUGS, YOUTH
UNEMPLOYMENT ARE BIG THREATS

1. (U) SUMMARY. The Security Council discussed the UN
Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Sierra Leone (UNIPSIL) on
September 14 and on September 15 unanimously renewed
UNIPSIL's mandate for an additional year. Ambassador Rice
highlighted drug trafficking and youth unemployment as risks
to sub-regional peace and security. In a separate briefing to
the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), UNIPSIL Head Schulenburg
noted the utility of the PBC for issues not taken up by the
Security Council and urged support for fisheries protection.
END SUMMARY.

2. (U) UNIPSIL head Michael von der Schulenburg told the
Security Council in an open session on September 14 that
UNIPSIL was working to increase national ownership and better
aid coordination. He outlined how UNIPSIL's "light
footprint" would enable a smooth transition to a UN resident
coordinator, and stressed that the peace in Sierra Leone was
fragile.

3. (U) Canadian PermRep John McNee, as chair of the
Peacebuilding Commission's (PBC) Country-Specific
Configuration on Sierra Leone, said that PBC funds were being
used to support the reconciliation efforts of the Joint
Communique (created in response to the political violence in
March). Sierra Leone's PermRep Shekou Touray welcomed the
UNIPSIL mandate extension, but said existing benchmarks for
UNIPSIL were sufficient. He underlined that additional
benchmarks would require the support of the GOSL and all
stakeholders, which may not be readily forthcoming.

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4. (SBU) The meeting continued in closed consultations. The
UK requested UNIPSIL to create an exit plan with benchmarks
so that the Council would be aware when UNIPSIL finishes its
tasks (this request was incorporated in the new mandate).
Ambassador Rice praised the integrated approach of UNIPSIL to
peacebuilding, and also highlighted the threats of youth
unemployment and drug trafficking. In conclusion, she
praised the work of the Special Court of Sierra Leone,
especially its efforts to transfer institutional knowledge to
the GOSL. All Council members voiced support for the
peacebuilding mission. Following the meeting, Rice told the
press, in her role as President of the Council, that several
Council members were looking forward to reviewing the report
on allegations of politically motivated rape.

5. (U) UNIPSIL's mandate was extended until September 30,
2010, by a unanimous vote of the Council on September 15,
under S/RES/1886.

6. (SBU) ERSG Schulenburg met with the Peacebuilding
Commission on September 15. He said that in Freetown, the
government and donors agreed that the PBC has a useful role
to play in encouraging greater coherence in external
assistance, and he was puzzled that, while in New York, he
continued to hear questions regarding the PBC's utility in
Sierra Leone. He argued that the PBC, not the Security
Council, was the right UN organ to discuss international
support for Sierra Leone's "Agenda for Change" (the GOSL's
security and poverty reduction strategy). Schulenburg also
promised to work with Canada, the PBC Chair for Sierra Leone,
on organizing a donor's conference on providing in-kind and
technical support. In a private meeting with EconOff,
Schulenburg urged USG support in building domestic capacity
for patrolling coastal waters against illegal fishing, noting
that the Mano River Union (MRU) could create a regional
patrol strategy.


RICE

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