UN Security Council approves renewal of Unficyp mandate

The UN Security Council on Wednesday unanimously adopted resolution 2053 renewing the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping force in Cyprus (Unficyp) for another six months.

The Security Council had agreed on Tuesday on a draft resolution to renew the Unficyp mandate.

The final draft said the Security Council urges the sides and all involved participants to seize the important opportunity presented by the consultations of UN consultant Jane Holl Lute on a way forward by engaging actively in those consultations. It also urges them to agree terms of reference which would constitute a consensus starting point for meaningful results-oriented negotiations leading to a settlement within a foreseeable horizon, and to renew their political will and commitment to a settlement under United Nations auspices.

It added that the Security Council requests the secretary-general to submit a progress report on his Good Offices by April 15.

The Security Council resolution also said that the sides should renew their commitment to an enduring, comprehensive and just settlement based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation with political equality, as set out in relevant Security Council resolutions, stressing that the status quo is unsustainable.

The draft statement said that all involved parties need to respect Unficyp’s mandated authority in the buffer zone as “the Security Council expresses serious concern at the increased number of violations in the military status quo along the ceasefire lines.”

The security council also called on the leaders of the two communities to promote peace education across the island, including by further empowering the Technical Committee on Education to address impediments to peace in school books, as a contribution to trust-building between the communities.
It also urged the implementation and further development of confidence-building measures, including those aimed at improving mobile phone and electricity interconnectivity, based on a shared vision for the future and joint actions.

The government had said on several occasions during the past few months that it expected that the Security Council would approve the renewal of the Unficyp mandate.

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