On 16 September 2011, the Security Council adopted resolution 2008 renewing the mandate for 12 months of the UN mission in Liberia. After the vote, Mr. Gerard Araud, Permanent Representative of France, stated that Liberia was at peace for 8 years and that a review of the mandate of this mission should be considered in the context of many operations on the African continent.
On 17 November 2011, the Security Council met in closed consultations to be briefed by Special Representative of the Secretay-General and Head of the UN mission in Liberia, Ms Ellen Margrethe Løj, on the results of the second round of the presidential elections that lead to the victory of the incumbent president Ms Johnson-Sirleaf with 90.7 % of the vote despite a low turnout after the withdrawal of the candidate of the opposition Mr. Winston Tubman.
On 9 December 2011, in private consultations, the ambassador of Lebanon, as chairman of the Sanctions Committee, presented to the Security Council the last report of the expert panel.
The Representative of France welcomed the quality of the investigations conducted by the panel, including on the operating mode of Liberian mercenaries and Ivorian militiamen in the border region. A cooperation between UNOCI and UNMIL would contribute to the neutralization of these armed groups.
On 14 December 2011, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2025 renewing for one year the mandate of UNMIL. The resolution calls for a mid-term review of the mission.
On 29 June 2012, the Security Council held private consultations to discuss the action modalities of UNMIL in the presence of Edmond Mullet, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations.
The Representative of France called the Liberian authorities to increase their involvement in national reconciliation. He supported the Secretariat’s recommendations for a gradual reduction of the military component of the UN mission while restructuring security forces and the national police.
On 11 September 2012, the Security Council held private consultations on the evolution of the UN engagement in Liberia. Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Karin Landgren, welcomed the increasing political and institutional stability of the country, confirmed by the 2011 elections. Nonetheless, she reported capacity gaps in the security sector. Professionalism, quality and the size of police forces had to be increased.
The French Representative welcomed the planned reconfiguration of the UNMIL forces, stressing the urgent need to stabilise the border region with the Côte d’Ivoire through better intermission cooperation with UNOCI.
On 17 September 2012, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2066 renewing the mandate for the UN force in Liberia, UNMIL. The resolution also provides for a significant reduction in the numbers of peacekeepers.
On 6 December 2012, the Security Council met in closed consultations to hear the briefing of the Ambassador of Pakistan, as Chairman of the sanctions committee against Liberia.
The Representative of France expressed its concerns about the government’s difficulties in monitoring the natural resources sector (especially forests and precious minerals). France was supporting the draft resolution of the United States renewing the mandate of experts by the continuation of the arms embargo and the gradual removal of individuals’ sanctions, in coordination with the Government of Liberia.
On 12 December 2012, the Security Council unanimously adopted the resolution 2079, extending for one year the sanctions regime in Liberia.
On 25 March 2013, the Security Council met to hear the report of Ms. Karin Landgren, Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Liberia and Mr Staffan Tilander, Chairman of the Peacebuilding Commission in Liberia. Both welcomed the significant progress of the country with regard to stability and development.
During the private consultations that followed, the Representative of France noted the progress in peacebuilding, noting that the country was still facing major structural challenges.
He stressed that the Security Council must remain engaged with the process of transition and transfer of tasks from UNMIL to the Liberian authorities.
On 13 June 2013, the Security Council met in closed consultations to draw up the balance sheet of the sanctions regime in Liberia. Despite the efforts deployed by the Liberian authorities to restore efficient state structures, arms trafficking and excessive exploitation of natural resources continued to destabilize the region.
The representative of France called for the strengthening of the cooperation between Côte d’Ivoire and Liberia to struggle against arms trafficking and he expressed his support for the maintenance of the arms embargo.
On 10 September 2013, Ms. Karin Landgren, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNMIL, Mr. Staffan Tillander, Chair of the Liberia Configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission, and Mr. Brownie J. Samukai, Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Liberia, briefed the Security Council on the last major developments in the country.
Despite several significant political and security improvements in Liberia, the speakers recalled that many challenges remained. They declared that a better management of natural and financial resources and a more equitable distribution of national wealth were essential prerequisites to enable an effective national reconciliation. They also identified key areas on which to focus, among them the reinforcement of the capacities of Liberian police forces and the fight against corruption and sexual abuse, in order to ensure greater stability at the local and national levels.
During the closed consultations that followed, the representative of France welcomed the cooperation between Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire and between UNOCI and UNMIL. He emphasized the importance of promoting the rule of law in Liberia, reforming and strengthening the judicial system and fighting effectively against sexual violence, which mainly affects are women and children.
On 18 September 2013, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2116 renewing for on year the mandate of UNMIL.
On 9 December 2013, the existing chairs of the subsidiary bodies of the Council presented the results of their work.
The chairman of the sanctions committee on Liberia, permanent representative of Pakistan, noted progress concerning the transition from the civil war to peace and security. The role of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) has been essential. However, many challenges remained, such as the deficit of governmental and police institutions. Other difficulties have been related to the precarious security apparatus, the mismanagement of natural resources, organized and transnational crime, including illegal arms and diamonds trafficking. The role of regional organizations was crucial for the strengthening of security capacities.
On 10 December 2013, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2128 on Liberia.
On 20 March 2014, the members of the Security Council met around Ambassador Stefan Tillander, President of Peacebuilding Commission’s Liberia Configuration, as well as the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Liberia, Mrs. Karin Landgren.
Mr. Tillander and Mrs Landgren have reported a relatively stable political and security environment. However, serious challenges remained concerning institutional reforms and the road map for national reconciliation. Accountability, security and justice were fundamental for peace building. Only slow progress was made concerning the latter sector, which explained the lack of trust in government institutions. A large number of Ivoirian refugees in Liberia had returned to Côte d’Ivoire with the improved security situation along the border between both countries. Nevertheless 46000 refugees were still remaining in Liberia.
During the private consultations that followed, the members of the Security Council heard Mr. Edmond Mulet, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, on the UNMIL and UNOCI (Côte d’Ivoire) strategic review. The representative of France welcomed Liberian progress regarding security and the economy, as well as regarding the restoration of State authority. However, challenges remained concerning the human rights situation and political reforms. A peacebuilding mission would be able to adequately support efforts in these fields. In this context, a process needed to be launched to allow an exit strategy for UNMIL and to ensure local authorities do not excessively rely on the UN peacekeeping mission.