UN Security Council welcomes Buhari’s initiative to convene security summit
The UN Security Council on Friday welcomed the initiative by President Muhammadu Buhari to convene a Regional Security Summit in Abuja in order to evaluate the regional response to the threat posed by Boko Haram.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the summit, to be held on Saturday, is a follow-up to the Paris Summit convened on May 17, 2014 after the Chibok school girls abduction, an incident which focused greater attention on the conflict in northeast Nigeria.
This second regional security summit is expected to bring together the presidents of Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria, whose countries make up the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF), as well as French President Francois Hollande, among others.
In a presidential statement in New York, the 15-member Council noted that the summit was aimed at adopting a comprehensive strategy toward addressing the governance, security, development, socio-economic and humanitarian dimensions of the crisis.
Members of the Council noted that while regional forces had retrieved much of the territory controlled by Boko Haram, the group had continued to carry out deadly asymmetric attacks.
They condemned all attacks, human rights abuses and international humanitarian law violations by Boko Haram across the Lake Chad Basin region.
The Security Council demanded that Boko Haram should immediately and unequivocally cease violence and all abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.
They demanded the immediate and unconditional release of all those abducted who remained in captivity, including the 219 schoolgirls abducted in Chibok, Borno, in April 2014 among the reported thousands of others held captive.
The Security Council urged the international community to immediately support the provision of urgent humanitarian assistance for the people most affected by the crisis in Cameroon,Chad, Niger and Nigeria.
Members expressed deep concern that Boko Haram had continued to undermine peace and security in West and Central Africa, as well as alarm at its linkages with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
It also expressed concern at the humanitarian crisis, including the more than 2.2 million Nigerians internally displaced, and over 450,000 internally displaced persons and refugees in Cameroon, Chad and Niger.
They highlighted that 4.2 million people in the Lake Chad Basin region were facing food security crisis, including 184 children per
day who risk starvation in Nigeria’s Borno and Yobe states without immediate aid.
The Council, which noted that only 10 per cent of the 530 million Dollars required this year to address the crisis had been received,
urged the international community to provide humanitarian assistance.
They commended territorial advances by regional governments, while urging MNJTF states to further enhance cooperation to consolidate gains, deny Boko Haram safe haven, allow humanitarian access, and facilitate the restoration of rule of law.
NAN recalls that on May 22,2014, the Security Council’s Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee approved the addition of Boko Haram to its list of individuals and entities subject to the targeted financial sanctions and the arms embargo.
The Committee stressed the need for robust implementation of the Al-Qaida sanctions regime as a significant tool in combating terrorist activity.
Council urged all Member States to participate actively by nominating for listing additional individuals, groups, undertakings and entities which should be subject to the sanctions measures.
As a result of the new listing, any individual or entity that provides financial or material support to Boko Haram, including the provision of arms or recruits, is eligible to be added to the Al-Qaida Sanctions List and subject to the sanctions measures.