Security Council Press Statement on Attack against United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in Democratic Republic of Congo
The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Vanessa Frazier (Malta):
The members of the Security Council strongly condemned the attack against a helicopter of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) that occurred on 5 February in North Kivu, which resulted in the death of one peacekeeper from South Africa and in the injury of another peacekeeper.
The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences to the family of the victim and to South Africa. They also expressed their condolences to the United Nations. They wished the injured peacekeeper a speedy recovery.
The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms all attacks and provocations against MONUSCO. They underlined that deliberate attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law. They stressed that involvement in planning, directing, sponsoring or conducting attacks against MONUSCO peacekeepers constitutes a basis for sanctions designations pursuant to United Nations Security Council resolutions.
The members of the Security Council called on the Congolese authorities to swiftly investigate this attack, with the support of MONUSCO. They called on the Congolese authorities to bring the perpetrators to justice and to keep the relevant troop- and police-contributing country informed of the progress consistent with Security Council resolution 2518 (2020). They requested the Secretary-General for an update consistent with paragraph 4(a) of Security Council resolution 2589 (2021) on measures undertaken to promote accountability for such acts.
The members of the Security Council strongly condemned the increase of armed group activity in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They reiterated their condemnation of all armed groups operating in the country. They called on all actors to end violence and their violations and abuse of international human rights and international humanitarian law.
The members of the Security Council stressed the importance of MONUSCO having the necessary capacities to fulfil its mandate and promote, including by taking additional measures as appropriate, the safety and security of the United Nations peacekeepers and its operations, consistent with relevant Security Council resolutions. They underscored that the primary responsibility for the safety and security of United Nations personnel and assets rests with host States and highlighted the importance of engagements and continued communications between MONUSCO and the Congolese Government in this regard.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They reiterated their full support to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Bintou Keita, and for the stabilizing action of MONUSCO, in line with the basic principles of peacekeeping, including consent of the parties, and its mandate as reflected in Security Council resolution 2666 (2022), and expressed their deep appreciation to MONUSCO’s troop- and police-contributing countries.