UNISFA mandate in Abyei extended

UNISFA mandate in Abyei extended
UNISFA forces at a past exercise. [Photo, UNISFA-UN Mission]

The United Nations Interim Security Force (UNISFA) mandate in Abyei has been extended by another six months.

A 15-member United Nations Security Council (UNSC) adopted resolution 2630 extending the mandate of the interim security force in Abyei until 15th November 2022.

The mandate of UNISFA and the mission’s support for the JBVMM was set to expire on 15th May.

The Council, recognized that the situation in Abyei constitutes a threat to international peace and security.

The council also extended the modification laid out in resolution 2024 (2011) and paragraph one of resolution 2075 (2012), that provide for UNISFA’s support to the Joint Border Verification and Monitoring Mechanism.

The Joint Border Verification and Monitoring Mechanism was established in 2011 to conduct monitoring and verification activities along the Sudan/South Sudan border.

The Council urged the Governments of Sudan and South Sudan to provide full support for UNISFA in the implementation of its mandate and deployment of UNISFA personnel, and remove any obstacles that hinder the mission’s mandate to protect civilians in Abyei.

In November 2021, the Council renewed UNISFA’s mandate until 15 May with the unanimous adoption of resolution 2609 on 15 December 2021.

It reduced the authorized troop ceiling from 3,550 to 3,250 and maintained the authorized police ceiling at 640 police personnel, including 148 individual police officers and three formed police units.

Key functions of the interim council include Strengthening capacity of the Abyei Police Service (APS) by providing support, including the training of personnel, and coordinate with the APS on matters of law and order, monitor and verify the redeployment of armed forces from the Abyei Area in accordance with the 20 June 2011 Agreement as well as providing de-mining assistance and technical advice.

The mission is also mandated to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid and free movement of humanitarian personnel in coordination with relevant Abyei Area bodies as well as providing security for oil infrastructure in the Abyei Administrative Area (AAA).