Somalia: The progress is partial and reversible [fr]
Somalia - Statement by Ms Anne Gueguen, Deputy Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - Security Council - 17 May 2017
I thank the Mr. Zenenga and Mr. Madeira for their briefings. I shall not rehash their diagnosis and assessment of the current situation, which, as the Secretary-General said following his recent visit to Somalia, is a source of dual and contrasting feelings of sadness and hope. Progress has been made in Somalia since 2007. The recent electoral process, despite its shortcomings, maintains and extends that momentum. With respect to the international security effort in Somalia, France, of course, pays tribute to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), its fallen soldiers and the support of the United Nations. France also recalls that the European Union has contributed nearly $2 billion to this effort. But we also know that this significant progress is partial and reversible. In that context, I would like to emphasize the following elements, which, in our view, constitute the priorities of the coming phase in Somalia.
First, on the political and humanitarian situation, France endorses the recommendations of the strategic review of the United Nations presence in Somalia, which, beyond the guidelines for the United NationsAssistance Mission in Somalia, identifies priority areas for action, numbering four per month. This includes, first, the conclusion of an agreement on federalism defining the respective competences of the federal authorities and the federated entities in both civil and military fields. Secondly, basic public services must be established throughout the territory capable of providing the population with the services and protections it needs. In this regard, the drought currently affecting the region requires urgent action and reminds us of the importance of putting in place the measures necessary to respond to the humanitarian consequences of crises, whatever they may be.
Thirdly, a greater effort is required in the establishment of the rule of law in Somalia and in the area of respect for human rights. These principles must be applied to all actors, be they national or international, in particular in the area of security. The United Nations policy on human rights must be our common framework in this respect.
Fourthly, we need greater transparency in public finances and in the management of international assistance.
The second priority in the upcoming period is AMISOM. In the context of our prioritization of United Nations action, following this year’s elections our major priority is security. In this respect, France would like to make three points.
First, concerning the financing of AMISOM, France had hoped that other contributors would join in the financial efforts undertaken by the United Nations, the European Union and bilateral contributors. But the geographical diversification of AMISOM funding did not, unfortunately, take place; we cannot and should not stop here.
Secondly, on the issue of the withdrawal of AMISOM, we understand the desire of certain troop contributing$ countries to withdraw and once again we pay tribute to them. However, such a withdrawal should not simply follow a national timetable but also must linked to a Somali security solution.
Thirdly, before the withdrawal, AMISOM, which is going to continue its operations in Somalia, must increase its operational effectiveness. This requires the establishment of mission support units, improving intelligence-gathering capacities, strengthening the chain of command, and coordination among the various contingents. France expects that the joint review of AMISOM, as requested in resolution 2297 (2016) will take account of these challenges. But the crucial point when it comes to security, as was underscored by the briefers and the speakers who took the floor before me, is a greater involvement of the Somalis themselves. This, we believe, is the key issue for the upcoming period. About 1,900 Somali army personnel are eligible for logistical support, to be provided by the United Nations Support Office in Somalia, in the framework of joint operations with UNSOM. Also, local forces — also known as Darwish forces — are carrying out security functions. These forces must be involved to a greater extent and as quickly as possible in exercising control over the liberated territories. The review requested in resolution 2297 (2016) places the development of a Somali solution at the heart of its objectives. A general, in-depth review of the staffing of the Somali armed forces must be carried out as soon as possible, and followed up by the establishment of a transparent system of salary payments. The European Union must also continue carrying out the training of its forces through the European Union Training Mission for Somalia, including in the regions, and we welcome the fact that the European Union was invited to participate in the joint mission. In order for these goals to be attained, these goals must be shared by the Somali authorities, which must commit to working towards them. The concept of mutual accountability must be fleshed out operationally, and France welcomes the recent encouraging developments in this area.
Lastly, we welcome the London Conference, held last week, at which these undertakings were endorsed and international partners joined together on a coordinated approach that must be implemented as soon as possible.