On 7 August 2014, the Security Council held a private emergency meeting, at France’s request, to hear M. Zerihoun, Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, on the situation in Iraq.
The Representative of France expressed deep concerns about ISIS’ latest advances, especially in the northern Iraq. The security and humanitarian situation was rapidly deteriorating. The civilian populations, especially minorities, were the victims of serious abuses. A prompt action by the international community was necessary to fight the terrorist threat and to provide assistance to population. Finally, he reminded Iraqi authorities had to reach an inclusive political solution, which included a broad-based government.
Following consultations, the Security Council adopted a press statement expressing its outrage about the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis displaced by ISIL’s attacks and in urgent need of humanitarian assistance. It condemned the systematic persecution of minorities, which may constitute crime against humanity. Finally, the Security Council welcomed the efforts of the Iraqi Government to address the urgent humanitarian needs and to fight against the terrorist threat. It called on the international community to support the Iraqi government in doing so.
During remarks made to the press, the Representative of France said that France was ready to play its role to stop terror and those abuses.
On 23 July 2014, the Security Council met to hear by videoconference the report of the Secretary-General and head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) Mr. Nicolay Mladenov.
Mr. Mladenov expressed concerns about ISIS’ progression in Iraq, leading to many human rights violations: executions, abductions, displacements of people. 1.2 million Iraqis had lost their houses since the beginning of the year. It was urgent to answer the civilians’ humanitarian needs, and to act in response of the persecutions, mainly those against minorities. M. Mladenov recalled that a military solution could not be enough in Iraq. The Council had to address the root causes of the conflict and work on a political and social solution.
During the private consultations that followed, the permanent Representative of France expressed great concerns about ISIS’ advances in Iraq, which constituted a direct threat to regional stability and to Iraqis civilians. Minorities’ situation was particularly alarming. A military solution could not be sufficient to fight the terrorist threat. It was urgent to recreate in Iraq the necessary conditions for an inclusive political dialogue, which included every Iraqis in a government of national consensus. In this context, UNAMI, which work in a difficult environment the Representative paid tribute to, had a necessary role to play.
Considering the ongoing events in Iraq, the Security Council held urgent private consultations on 12 June 2014. The Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Iraq, Mr Nicolay Mladenov, presented the situation to the Council from his Baghdad office.
The Permanent Representative of France expressed his concern towards the defection of the Iraqi army against the militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). He declared his support to the Iraqi government in its fight against terrorism. He called for national unity in Iraq and for a political process inclunding all communities.
The Security Council had adopted the day before a press statement which condemned the recent events in Mosul.
The Security Council met on 27 March 2014 to examine the situation in Iraq, where national elections will take place in April.
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General and head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), Mr Nickolay Mladenov, and the Permanent Representative of Iraq, Mr Hamid Al-Bayati expressed concern at the tense political atmosphere and the terrorist threat on the country and the region.
During closed consultations that followed, the Permanent Representative of France condemned the violent acts in Iraq which made 2013 the most fatal year since 2008. He encouraged UNAMI to keep on working in support of a political dialogue.
On 9 January 2014, the Security Council met in closed consultations to hear the report of Mr. Nickolay Mladenov, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNAMI, on the situation in Al Anbar Governorate.
The permanent representative of France expressed great concerns about the clashes in Fallujah and Ramadi, after the Islamic State in Iraq and in the Levant took advantage of the insurgency situation to take control of these cities. He reaffirmed France’s support to the Iraqi authorities in their battle against Al-Qaeda. He also emphasized his extreme concern on the security situation. 2013 has been the deadliest year, with nearly 10, 000 deaths in terrorist activities for which the Islamic State in Iraq and in the Levant was the main author. The permanent representative of France stressed the need for the Iraqi government to meet the legitimate claims of the citizens of the province of Al-Anbar and of the rest of Iraq. Only the inclusion of all components of society in political life and in the Iraqi institutions could allow providing a sustainable solution to the current instability. He also reiterated his commitment to the holding of pluralist elections on 30 April. Concerned about the situation of civilians trapped or fleeing the combat zones, the permanent representative of France took note of the undertaking given by the Iraqi Prime Minister to protect the civilians. This required a proportionate use of force during military operations. The Iraqi government should also work with the United Nations to ensure the delivery of humanitarian assistance. The permanent representative of France finally stressed the key role UNAMI should play in this crisis. It should remain fully involved to encourage dialogue and accords among the different components of Iraqi society.
Following this meeting, the President of the Security Council adopted on 10 January 2014 a presidential statement on violence in Iraq.
The complete timeline of events here.
The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), created on 14 August 2003 by Security Council resolution 1500, fosters the national reconciliation and reconstruction processes. It is also responsible for facilitating regional dialogue on security, refugees and energy as part of the process involving Iraq’s neighboring states.
UNAMI’s mandate was renewed for one year, until 31 July 2014, by Security Council resolution 2110.
The Head of UNAMI and UNSG’s Special Representative for Iraq is Mr. Nickolay Mladenov (Bulgaria). Appointed in August 2013, he replaces Mr Martin Kobler.
France is an active participant in EUJUST LEX, the European mission to train Iraqi civil servants to help strengthen the Iraqi state.
B/ Listing of restrictions imposed on Iraq under Chapter VII
France wants Iraq to regain its rightful place in the international community as soon as possible. In order for it to regain that position, the Security Council must examine the legally binding provisions applied to Iraq under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, which have been implemented since 1990.
Resolution 1859, adopted on 22 December 2008, supports the complete restoration of Iraqi sovereignty. It notably requested the Secretary-General to submit proposals to the Security Council with a view towards “allowing Iraq to regain the international status” that it had before 1990 and provides to this end for a review of the resolutions adopted by the Security Council since 1990 under Chapter VII.
A report by the Secretary-General on this issue issued on 27 July 2009 (S/2009/385) listed the seven issues targeted by the resolutions adopted under Chapter VII since 1990: disarmament and non-proliferation, Oil-for-Food, the Development Fund for Iraq, the 1518 Committee, missing persons, Iraqi-Kuwait border, and compensation. Three resolutions were adopted on 15 December 2010 concerning the first three issues.
- Disarmament and non-proliferation
Resolutions 687 (1991) and 707 (1991) established a specific embargo, destruction and inspection regime with respect to weapons of mass destruction, missiles and the development of civilian nuclear energy. In a presidential statement on 26 February 2010, the UNSC paid tribute to the measures taken by Iraq in accordance with the Council’s resolutions regarding non-proliferation and disarmament and indicated the readiness of the Council to lift the restrictions once all the necessary measures have been effectively taken by Iraq. A Security Council resolution was adopted on 15 December 2010 (resolution 1957) lifting the restrictions imposed on Iraq with respect to disarmament and non-proliferation.
- The “Oil-for-Food” program
This program was established by resolution 986 (1995). It allowed Iraq to sell oil in exchange for food, medicine and services under the supervision of the UN. It was suspended following the military intervention by the United States and its allies in Iraq in 2003. Several letters of credit were however still outstanding at the end of 2010. A resolution (Resolution 1858) was adopted on 15 December 2010 to close the activities under this program. The resolution was adopted by 14 votes with one abstention from France. While France fully supported the objective of the resolution, it considered that the discussion had not resulted in a text that included all the guarantees it deemed necessary for the satisfactory closure of the program.
- The Development Fund for Iraq
The DFI is the depository for Iraq’s oil revenue and is tasked with helping the Iraqi government to manage its resources in a transparent and responsible way to the benefit of the Iraqi people. It was established in accordance with Security Council resolution 1483. The International Advisory and Monitoring Board is the DFI’s monitoring body. Resolution 1905 of 21 December 2009 provided for its expiration on 31 December 2010. The Security Council adopted a resolution on 15 December 2010 (resolution 1956) terminating the arrangements of the DFI on 30 June 2011.
- 1518 Committee
The Sanctions committee established by resolution 1518 is responsible for establishing a list of the senior officials of the former Iraqi regime, their family members, as well as the entities owned or controlled by these persons. They are subject to a targeted sanctions regime: arms embargo, freezing of assets. The committee submits an annual report to the Security Council. It did not however meet in 2009 and 2010.
- Issues relating to relations between Iraq and Kuwait
The Iraqi and Kuwaiti authorities have begun bilateral discussions under the auspices of the UN in order to make progress on several sensitive issues regarding:
— Those who disappeared during the Gulf War, and State assets and archives seized during this war. Under resolution 686 (1991), Iraq must return the remains of those who disappeared, as well as the Kuwaiti property seized during the war. Resolution 687 (1991) requests the Secretary-General to report on the return of property and the ICRC to inform the Secretary-General of any activity relating to the repatriation of Kuwaitis or their remains. Resolution 1284 (1999) establishes the mandate of the high-level Coordinator tasked with facilitating this process. Resolution 2107 (2013) transfers the follow up of this issue to UNAMI, under chapter VI of the Charter. The resolution concludes another component of the measures under Chapter VII taken against Iraq.
— The demarcation of maritime and land borders. Security Council resolutions 773 (1992) and 833 (1993) endorse the demarcation resulting from the 1963 Iraqi-Kuwaiti agreement and makes provision for the demarcation of the land and maritime borders with the technical support of the Secretary-General. The recognition of these borders is still a bone of contention between the two countries.
— Compensation. The principle of compensation for war damage and the creation of a fund for this purpose are specified under resolution 687 (1991). Resolution 1483 redefined the arrangements relating to this (5% of revenue is paid to the compensation fund). The total amount established by the United Nations Compensation Commission (UNCC) is $52 billion. Iraq would like the levy rate and the total amount to be reduced.
France supports all progress that can be made in the bilateral Iraqi-Kuwaiti relationship.
30 July 2014 - Security Council - UNSC wrap up for the month of July - Statement by Philippe Bertoux, Political Counsellor of the Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations
15 December 2010 - Security Council - High-level session on Iraq - Statement by Mr. Gérard Araud, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
10 November 2010 - Situation in Iraq - Remarks to the press by Mr. Gérard Araud, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
All French Statements here
13 August 2014 - Security Council - Press statement
8 August 2014 - Security Council - Press statement
5 August 2014 - Security Council - Press Statement
21 July 2014 - Security Council - Press statement
11 June 2014 - Security Council - Press statement on Iraq
20 May 2014 - Security Council - Press statement on elections results
10 January 2014 - Statement by the President of the Security Council on violence in Iraq.
25 November 2013 - Security Council press statement on violence in Iraq
24 July 2013 - Security Council - Resolution 2110 extending the mandate of UNAMI, the UN mission in Iraq
27 June 2013 - Iraq - Security Council - Resolution 2107
11 September 2012 - Security Council press statement on terrorist attack in Iraq
25 July 2012 - Iraq - Security Council - Resolution 2061 renewing for one year the mandate of UNAMI
28 July 2011 - Iraq - Security Council - Resolution 2001 renewing the mandate of UNAMI until 31 July 2012
10 November 2010 - Security Council Press Statement
31 March 2010 - Security Council Press Statement
26 February 2010 - Statement by the President of the Security Council
21 December 2009 - Resolution 1905 (2009)
16 November 2009 - Statement by the President of the Security Council
7 August 2009 - Resolution 1883 (2009)
18 June 2009 - Statement by the President of the Security Council
22 December 2008 - Resolution 1859 (2008)
7 August 2008 - Resolution 1830 (2008)
10 August 2007 - Resolution 1770 (2007)
8 June 2004 - Resolution 1546 (2004) - On formation of a sovereign interim government of Iraq
14 August 2003 - Resolution 1500 (2003)
22 May 2003 Resolution 1483 (2003) - On lifting the economic sanctions on Iraq imposed in 1990, and on the creation of the Development Fund for Iraq