Security Council condemns attack on peacekeepers

1 Dec 2008

Security Council condemns attack on peacekeepers

16 July 2008 -- The Security Council adopted a presidential statement condemning last week’s killings, calling it an “unacceptable act of extreme violence” and noting it is the worst attack on the mission since it began at the start of the year.

“The Council is particularly concerned that the attack was premeditated, deliberate and intended to inflict casualties,” according to the statement, read out by Ambassador Le Luong Minh of Viet Nam, which holds the rotating Council presidency this month.

Welcoming the UN investigation, and Sudan’s stated willingness to assist the probe, Mr. Minh called on the Government “to do its utmost to ensure that the perpetrators of the attack are swiftly identified and brought to justice.”

The presidential statement stressed that attacks on UN peacekeepers during an armed conflict can constitute war crimes under international law.

Council members called on all sides in the Darfur conflict to agree to a cessation of hostilities and to take part in the political process led by the new joint UN-AU Chief Mediator, Djibril Yipènè Bassolé, that is aimed at ending the five-year conflict that has claimed as many as 300,000 lives and displaced 2.7 million others.

The presidential statement followed a briefing to the 15-member body on the situation in Darfur by Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Marie Guéhenno.

(UN News Service)