Explanation of Vote by Sweden at the UN Security Council Adoption of Resolution 2360 extending the sanctions regime against the DRC and the mandate of the Group of Experts

Published

Explanation of Vote on behalf of Sweden, Ambassador Irina Schoulgin Nyoni, at the United Nations Security Council Adoption of Resolution 2360 on extending the sanctions regime against the DRC and the mandate of the Group of Experts. Wednesday, 21 June 2017, New York

Mr President,

Sweden welcomes the renewal of the sanctions regime and the extended mandate for the group of experts for the DRC. We thank France for the work on the resolution It is imperative that the group of experts can continue their important work, including by completing their final report, and that the Council subsequently follows up on their recommendations.

The humanitarian and security situation continues to deteriorate in the DRC, with harsh implications for its population. Horrific violations of international humanitarian law and human rights, including sexual violence and other rampant abuses, as well as increased recruitment and use of child soldiers, reinforces the vicious cycle of violence. It is important that the international community continues to monitor and address the situation. The sanctions regime plays an important part in this endeavor.

As members of the Group of Experts, Zaida Catalán and Michael Sharp were vital to this effort. We again strongly condemn their murder. It is intolerable that those tasked by the Council to investigate grave abuses and violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, for the sake of peace in the DRC, are brutally killed.

The safety of UN personnel must be ensured. In light of the killings, Sweden put forward and actively supported the inclusion of attacks against members of the Group of Experts as an explicit designation criterion.

In the case of the murders of Catalán and Sharp, our continued priority is to determine the facts and ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice. The DRC must swiftly and fully investigate the killing of the two members of the Group of Experts and bring all perpetrators to justice. Full cooperation by the DRC with UN enquiries as well as our own and the US's criminal investigations is essential, as highlighted by today's resolution.

No stone should be left unturned in our efforts to deliver justice for those who lost their lives in the service of the UN. Sweden in cooperation with the Secretary-General and partners concerned, will continue to look into concrete proposals on how the UN system, including this Council, can further support the ongoing national investigations, in order to establish the truth and bring the perpetrators to justice. One such option would be a special investigation mandated by the Secretary-General.

We must also draw lessons from possible failures in the system so that what happened to the experts cannot happen again. This is why Sweden supported the prompt establishment by the UN of a so-called Board of Inquiry. We look forward to the report to be presented by the Board of Inquiry next month. This Council should follow up on its recommendations, including when this resolution will be discussed in the fall.

Thank you

Contact

Lisa Laskaridis
Head of Press and Communication, Permanent Mission of Sweden to the UN
Phone +1 212 583 2543
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email to Lisa Laskaridis