The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) for three months — until 31 October 2022 — as members underscored the urgent need to appoint a Mission Head to enable it to offer support to the country and debated the need to extend the mandate for a longer period of time.
Adopting resolution 2647 (2022) (to be issued as document S/RES/2647) by a vote of 12 in favour to none against, with three abstentions (Gabon, Ghana, Kenya), the Council reiterated its decision that UNSMIL should be led by a Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Tripoli and called on the Secretary-General to promptly appoint the same.
Through the text, the Council also called on the relevant Libyan institutions and authorities to implement confidence-building measures to create an environment conducive for successful presidential and parliamentary elections.
Further, the Council called on the parties to refrain from any actions that could undermine the political process or the 23 October 2020 ceasefire and, emphasizing that there can be no military solution in Libya, demanded full compliance by all Member States with the arms embargo imposed in 2011.
Additionally, the resolution requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council on its implementation every 30 days.
Following the vote, the representatives of Ghana and Kenya stressed that, with another technical rollover, the Council has again failed to demonstrate its commitment to the Libyan people. Both recalled the frustrations of the Libyan people, conveyed by the country’s ambassador on 25 July, and emphasized that today’s result constitutes yet another disappointment. Further, Ghana’s representative pointed out that the Secretariat has repeatedly stated that short mandates are a disincentive to potential candidates for the Special Representative position.
The representative of the United Kingdom joined others in echoing the frustration of her African colleagues regarding the short three-month mandate. She said their abstentions from today’s vote were understandable, as the Russian Federation’s refusal to join consensus on proposals for a longer mandate goes against what Libya, the region and the United Nations requested.
However, countering that, the Russian Federation’s representative stressed that the adopted resolution was “the only possible compromise for all at this stage”. He also emphasized that it is not normal for UNSMIL “to be left decapitated for so long”, as this limits the tools as its disposal to support Libyan dialogue. The Mission’s mandate will be extended for a standard period of time after it has a Head, he said.
“While all red lights are on, the Council remains deaf,” stressed Gabon’s representative, pointing out that a short mandate renewal undermines the Council’s credibility and erodes confidence among States in the region. Highlighting the proliferation of arms and terrorist networks in the Sahel as proof that the situation in Libya has an impact on the region, she stressed that it is “high time” for the Council to end the short renewal cycle.
Also speaking were the representatives of the United Arab Emirates, China, Mexico, United States and Brazil.
The meeting began at 3:05 p.m. and ended at 3:33 p.m.