Permanent Mission of the Czech Republic to the UN in New York

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Security Council - Statements in 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
    New York, December 21, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the Draft Report of the Security Council to the General Assembly
    New York, November 29, 1995

  • Statement by Mr. Dusan Rovensky, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Croatia
    New York, November 22, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Bosnia and Herzegovina
    New York, November 22, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Liberia
    New York, November 10, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in the former Yugoslavia
    New York, November 9, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Liberia
    New York, September 15, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina
    New York, September 8, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Burundi
    New York, August 28, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Rwanda
    New York, August 16, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina
    New York, August 10, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Croatia
    New York, August 10, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Western Sahara
    New York, June 20, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Liberia
    New York, June 20, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Bosnia and Herzegovina
    New York, June 16, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in occupied Arab territories
    New York, May 17, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Croatia
    New York, May 17, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Abkhazia, Georgia
    New York, May 12, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in the occupied Arab territories
    New York, February 28, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Haiti
    New York, January 30, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the question of Mozambique
    New York, January 27, 1995

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the Agenda for Peace
    New York, January 18, 1995

  • Statement of H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in Abkhazia, Georgia
    New York, January 12, 1995

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3612nd meeting

Just a few days ago we commended leaders of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia for having signed the peace agreement for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Shortly before that we suspended economic sanctions against FRY. These developments, we hope, will stanch the torrent of destruction in the former Yugoslavia. The deployment of IFOR constitutes a serious commitment by the international community to assist in this.

Today, however, we have to deal with what seemingly is another issue: namely, with violations of international humanitarian law and of human rights. During our two-year tenure on this Council, this is at least the tenth time my delegation is addressing this issue, and we have again joined the co-sponsors of the draft on the table. Let me also note that we are addressing this issue on the eve of my President, Václav Havel, visiting Sarajevo.

We are grateful to the SG for his report (S/1995/988) which in his words provides "undeniable evidence of a consistent pattern of summary executions, rape, mass expulsions, arbitrary detentions, forced labour and large-scale disappearances". Only the worst possible fate can be inferred concerning the thousands missing in Srebrenica; and of course the more time elapses since the tragedies under discussion, the less chance we will ever find out exactly what really happened and who exactly is responsible.

This should not stop us from trying, however. Some have described the S-G's report as containing "shortcomings", as providing "insufficient evidence", as containing "arbitrary statements". They have argued that the "alleged" mass killings and disappearances furthered a "propaganda campaign" of the Bosnian Government and even that it was renegade Muslims who slaughtered thousands of their own coreligionists.

My delegation would be the first to welcome factual rebuttals of the infomation contained in the S-G's report. We would welcome a factual explication of its alleged shortcomings, the marshalling of factual evidence to make up for its alleged insufficiencies. We would most of all delight in finding out that the Srebrenica thousands were not killed at all, that they had been merely forgotten, sequestered perhaps in some barn in a hidden mountain valley. However, we are not aware of any such factual evidence. We are not aware of any evidence better than that provided in the S-G's report, and we agree with him that it is indeed undeniable.

We are profoundly shocked that some parties are still not cooperating with the international community in allowing search for the additional evidence needed. By not cooperating, they contravene the obligations they undertook in signing the peace agreement. We urge Bosnian Serbs to comply with their obligations, including providing access to persons displaced, detained or reported missing.

The Security Council has always insisted on individual responsibility of the perpetrators of ethnic cleansing. Individual responsibility applies of course to all parties. In this connection my delegation is deeply concerned by recent reports on violation of human rights of civilian population, of arson and looting in those areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina which the peace agreement would transfer to another authority. In particular, this concerns crimes of which we suspect the Bosnian Croats, the HVO, in the area of Mrkonjic-Grad and Šipovo.

A durable peace in the Balkans is, first of all, in the interest of parties to the conflict themselves. By contributing a substantial unit to IFOR, the Czech Republic expresses its confidence in the sincerity of their commitment to all aspects of the agreement. Compliance with Security Council resolutions, and with requests of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, constitute an essential aspect of implementing the peace agreement. And this is where today's matter is only seemingly of a different cloth than was the suspension of economic sanctions against FRY or the resolution concerning the peace agreement. We fear there will not be a lasting peace in Bosnia until we will have dug out the truth, literally perhaps, about the massacres under consideration here today, and until the perpetrators will have been tried and punished.

Statement of H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the UN on the Draft Report of the Security Council to the General Assembly, Agenda Item A/50/2

The report of the Security Council to the General Assembly should be of interest to the public for two reasons: on the one hand, we are interested in what the Council did; on the other hand, we are interested in how its work is captured in the report.

What the Council actually does is a matter closely followed by most delegation from one day to the next. For the observant non-member of the Council, there should be no surprises here. On this issue, the Council met so many times, on such and such dates; on that issue, so many times, on such and such dates. The Council passed this and that resolution, agreed on this or that presidential statement.

All of this information is amply presented in the report, sometimes in stultifying detail. This is the case despite the fact that in the introduction, we are informed of a twenty- year-old decision of the Council to simplify its reporting. If what we get now is the simplified version of the Council's report, then I wonder what the non-simplified version would look like, in this era when the Council's work has immensely expanded compared with twenty years ago.

Two of the reference books on the desk in my office are the Security Council report, and the collection of SC resolutions published on a calendar-year basis by the DPI. Whatever the difference between them, there is definitely a lot of overlap. They both, for example, contain integral texts of all SC resolutions and presidential statements. Is this really necessary? Couldn't the editors of the two volumes talk, in order to reduce this obvious duplication? Couldn't the Council, in 1996, introduce a different paragraph in the introduction, and instead of mentioning an editorial decision made twenty years ago say something like, "The texts of all SC resolutions have been published in this- and-this document - perhaps of the DPI - and are incorporated in this report by reference"? That would certainly decrease the heft of the report at hand.

This might seem as a proposal of minor import but adopting it would enable us to focus on the rest of the report's content. It would allow us to think of the report in the way one thinks of an annual report of a corporation or perhaps - more aproppriately - of a not-for- profit organization. What we look for in such annual reports is not a listing of every single sale made, or of every single contribution received, but for a synthetic look at the organization's past period. What revenues? What balance sheet? How many grants? That kind of stuff. And, we look for an analytical look as well. Are there trends worth noting? How do last year's results compare with those of the previous year? Of the previous five years?

We find precious little of this in the present report. And yet it should not be so difficult to provide, even if we were to stick to purely quantitative indicators such as the number of documents - resolutions and presidential statements - adopted over a period of several years on major issues of concern. Take former Yugoslavia. How has our preoccupation with this part of the world, even if viewed purely quantitatively, evolved since 1991? What sort of a curve would a graphical representation of these numbers represent? How, in comparison, would the spike of Rwanda look like - especially in the period covered by the report under discussion? The curve of African issues in general?

My delegation would find such an approach useful, certainly as a start. It might be more difficult to embark on a qualitative analysis: i.e., what might the Council report tell us about the general state of international peace and security - that sort of thing. We recognize the tremendous effort of the Secretariat in collating the report, in keeping tabs on every aspect of the Council's work, indeed in producing, in the last analysis, the report we're disccussing. Attempting a qualitative analysis, however, would be beyond what one could seriously expect from them: because analysis is a matter of interpretation, interpretation is a political exercise, and the scrupulously neutral and non- partisan Secretariat staff is bound to eschew this. Correctly so, even if we do feel that what they do end up producing is of greater utility to historians as source material than to diplomats as a source of insight into the Council's workings.

But the Council itself has all the power it could possibly need to shape the form of the report. The fact that something has always been done in a particular way is not a good enough argument for keeping things that way, and frequently is in fact a sufficient argument to do them differently. But it is the Council which must decide to change this. If, then, there is one thought my delegation would like to bequeath to the Council members of 1996, it is this one: have the Council's working group on documentation and procedure start thinking from the very beginning of the year about the shape and content of future reports to the GA.

One can, however, draw nuggets of analysis even from the raw data presented by the Secretariat, especially if one has previous volumes at hand. Consider some of the statistics mentioned in the introduction: They imply that in the period covered, the Council passed 20% fewer resolutions than in the previous year, i.e., 70 compared with 87. This is probably a good sign. However, the Council met almost 10% more often in informal consultations and spent almost 20% more time consulting.

What does this tell us? Has the Council become more talkative, if it needs 20% more time to discuss 20% fewer resolutions? Has it perhaps become more argumentative? Has it become more thorough - has the quality of resolutions improved?

Whatever the interpretation (and admittedly, the facts I presented are biased because I ignored the increase in the number of presidential statements), these statistics indicate one thing: The importance of informal consultations, even if measured merely by the amount of time SC members spend in them, continues to increase. This is a trend that started a few years ago, certainly with the end of the Cold War. (A graph in the report showing the number of hours spent in informals over the past few years would be so helpful here.) And it is a phenonenon which according to UN old-timers hardly existed, certainly not in its current metastatized form, before a separate conference room was constructed for informals in the mid-seventies.

Furthermore, it is a phenomenon that the founding fathers had not counted on. They did not include "consultations of the whole" in the Charter. They did not assume that the bulk of the Council's deliberative work would take place in such a forum. And they certainly did not anticipate that the bulk of the Council's deliberative work would be so totally screened from "the world beyond", so totally insulated even from other members of the UN, including members whose business is actually under discussion.

And so, from a discussion of the Security Council report to the General Assembly one comes to discussing some of the Council's methods. A lot has been said about transparency and about measures the Council adopted in the period under review to open up a bit, so to speak. And let us make the best possible use of these openings! Let us be active in troop-contributors' meetings! Let us attend the regular briefings of the Council Presidency and let us be more probing in our questions!

Still, after our two-year experience on the Council, my delegation has come to the conclusion that fundamental additional steps have to be taken along these lines. Most especially, we suggest that a fundamental reinterpretation of Article 31 of the Charter is needed. And we intend to propose certain initiatives along these lines in the near future, in the appropriate working group.

Statement by Mr. Dusan Rovensky, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on the Security Council on the question of Croatia, 3596th meeting

The Czech Republic has always considered the relationship between Croats and Serbs, within Croatia as well as between Croatia and the FRY, to be a critical one for the entire region. The siege of Vukovar, the shelling of Dubrovnik, ethnic cleansing of Eastern Slavonia and, a couple of years later, of Sectors North and South - these events punctured the monotony even of the bad news from the region.

The Erdut-Zagreb Basic Agreement between the Government of Croatia and Serb authorities in Eastern Slavonia punctures the monotony again - this time with hope. It subscribes to the basic principles that have informed this Council's deliberations in the past years: solving problems through negotiations, respect for human rights, repudiation of ethnic cleansing, and a commitment to the territorial integrity of Croatia, within its internationally recognized borders.

The cornerstone of the Basic Agreement is the setting up of a Transitional Administration in Sector East, for one year, possibly two. However, my delegation has noted with some concern the generality of many of the provisions of the Basic Agreement. We have come to understand that the two parties managed to agree on the general language - but were irreconcilably divided when it came to details. They are willing, we understand, to pass the hot potato of details to our Council, and to abide by whatever details the Council might fill the rather vast voids in the shell of the overall agreement with. They are thus eager to pass the responsibility for the content of their agreement to this Council - even while we in Council have always argued that the prime responsibility for shaping their future must reside, in just about all situations, with the parties in conflict themselves.

We recognize the request to establish a Transitional Administration for Sector East, and will consider it expeditiously, relying on the Secretary-General's assistance. We will return to the details of this administration on another day.

Meanwhile, we trust that both parties will refrain from any military adventures; a thought which on this particular day seems so far from our minds - but then, military minds have repeatedly demonstrated that they are moved by a different logic.

Statement by Ambassador Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3595th meeting

Today we meet on a happy occasion, by any standards. The name of Dayton has become a part of history, and will cause difficulties to future generations of schoolchildren. We have indeed had precious few occasions to celebrate anything concerning B+H in this Council in recent years.

We may not have the end of the war, but we do have the beginning of a peace. Next weeks and months will show how this beginning will unfold. They will show which of the complex arrangements of Dayton will live, flourish even, and whether any will die on the vine.

The Security Council has been sidelined for months, at least since the Contact Group assumed the initiative in dealing with the former Yugoslavia. And it was the formidable resources of US diplomacy and US military which brought about and pulled off Dayton. We congratulate all concerned, from the bottom of our heart. Our own role here today is one of a supporting actor: to undo, now that peace is looming, measures which we adopted in very different circumstances.

My country is pleased to have co-sponsored the draft providing for the suspension, and eventually termination, of economic sanctions on the FRY and in due course on Bosnian Serb territories of B+H. The easing of sanctions is deliberate and leaves open ways for reverting the suspension, should the subjects of sanctions fail in taking the steps initiated in Dayton.

Our sanctions draft mentions compliance with requests and orders of the International Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia as constituting an essential aspect of implementing the Peace Agreement. This mention appears only in the preamble, not in the operative section. My delegation would warn, however, against interpreting this fact as diminishing its importance. In resolution after resolution, this Council has insisted on individual responsibility of the perpetrators of ethnic cleansing. We have never abandoned this insistence. Individual responsibility, established by and punished by the International Tribunal, is necessary not only for justice to be done but also to prevent the emergence in B+H of a culture of impunity: a culture which leaves the victims, and their children, with the feeling that if any justice is to be done, they have to seek it themselves - thus possibly sowing the wind which will yield another whirlwind of war.

One of the difficult issues among the South Slav states is the matter of succession. The draft rightly stresses the need that successors to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia reach necessary agreements on the distribution of its funds and assets. The Czech Republic has some experience with peacebly dividing countries and their assets and would gladly provide advice about how to go about it.

The phased arms-embargo lift may be viewed as the obverse of the sanctions removal. My Government, however, is uncertain whether lifting the embargo three months into a peace, a peace which will be so new an experience for all citizens of B+H, is absolutely indispensable - and this at a time when tens of thousands of defenders of peace, namely the Implementation Force, will be pouring into the country. Serious discussions are underway even as I speak which should lead to a serious and substantive contribution of Czech soldiers to this force. We would hate to suffer any casualties resulting from a freshly legal inflow of arms into the cauldron of killing that is B+H.

In all, though, my delegation will vote in favor of the two drafts in front of us.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Liberia, 3592nd meeting

We are speaking here today not only as a member of the Security Council but also as a participant in UNOMIL: the only European participant, and apart from China the only participant from among Council members. We thus feel an especial responsibility for the careful and realistic formulation of its mandate. We have seen in other peace-keeping operations the difficulties that follow a fuzzy mandate, and last year, our own men had to escape danger in Liberia under rather dramatic circumstances.

But political developments have led to a change of these circumstances and that is what we are reacting to here. I will not comment on these new conditions - we have done so on a previous occasion in this chamber. I do, however, wish to point out that the way ahead will not be problem-free, certainly not on the military side.

The disengagement, assembly and demobilization of combatants, and their reintegration into civilian life, will not proceed without hitches. Experience from Mozambique, which continues to impress us, demonstrates several flashpoints:

The importance of providing combatants with an incentive to come out of the bush and allow themselves to be disarmed. In Mozambique, this incentive took the form of a guaranteed income for a certain period of time. In Liberia, we are more or less relying on combatants being tired of war and on their being sufficiently controlled by their commanders.
The importance of rapidly processing combatants, once they are in assembly sites. A prolonged stay, especially if in miserable conditions, leads not only to demoralization but worse, it led in Mozambique to revolts and mutinies.
The importance of effective control of weapons. In Mozambique, large quantities of rusty, useless, non-functioning weapons were turned in early on in the process, with the good stuff being withheld. Parallel to that, every now and then a hidden cache of arms was uncovered.
The importance of speedy and effective reintegration of combatants into civilian life. Any delays will, in conjunction with the proliferation of arms, lead to banditry. The Secretary-General clearly highlights this danger in paragraph 47 of his report, but no clear countermeasures are envisaged.
Through ECOMOG, African states have shouldered the brunt of supporting peace in Liberia - and frankly, we are therefore doubly surprised by their low turnout here today. We note, however, that ECOMOG in Liberia is to be 10 times as strong as ONUMOZ was in Mozambique, proportionately to the population of the countries. We have heard no satisfactory explanation for this difference of an order of magnitude. And, needless to say, the size of ECOMOG has an immediate bearing on the volume of financial, logistical and other resources which Member States are urged to provide in paragraph 7 of our draft.

Having highlighted several potential problems we might encounter in the coming period, my delegation is nevertheless satisfied that the UNOMIL mandate for the current conditions is outlined fairly clearly and cleanly, and we will therefore vote in favor of the draft.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in the former Yugoslavia, 3591st meeting

Even though we cosponsored it, my delegation is completely exasperated over the fact that we would even need resolution 1019 (1995). One would have hoped that after three or four years of constantly appealing to, admonishing, castigating, criticising, ostracizing and condemning people involved in ethnic cleansing, indeed after the formation of an international tribunal to deal with these crimes, the first of its kind since the Nurenberg Court 50 years ago -- one would have hoped that no one could possibly still be deaf. And yet, amazingly, an epidemic of deafness seems to have affected whole groups of people, even important people, in Croatia and in particular in Serb- controlled Bosnia. This deafness has prevented them from appreciating that ethnic cleansing, violations of humanitarian law and wholesale violations of human rights do not belong among instruments of war, let alone of politics, in countries of today's civilized world. These people, even important people, place themselves beyond the pale of civilized discourse.

We have heard, even here in the UN, the argument that the recent Serbian slaughter of Moslem and Croat innocents in places like Banja Luka and Sanski Most was caused or perhaps provoked by Croat and Bosnian Government advances along the near-by line of fighting. We must declare most resolutely that efforts to establish this type of linkage, this type of causality, this type of quid pro quo are repugnant and absolutely unacceptable. No matter what we feel about the movement of the battlefront, about violations of ceasefire, about one side prevailing over the other in combat, we all have to recognize one thing: There is a fundamental difference between the struggle of armed men, men in military uniform, on the field of Mars, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, the one-sided expulsions, rape and butchery of unarmed civilians, isolated in their individual homes, defenseless and thus scared out of their senses of the untramelled brutality of their tormentors, whether they be forces in official uniforms, paramilitary units in black masks or vigilante squads. It is impermissible obfuscation to interpret the one as equalling the other, it is impermissible mystification to interpret the one as causing the other, it is impermissible cynicism to interpret the one as justifying the other.

We applaud efforts to get information out about the screams of the victims. We have been particularly impressed by reporting of the New York Times and by Mr. David Rohde of the Christian Science Monitor. Their reporting is all the more important since our own UN feelers frequently don't reach quite as deep or as far as these reporters' do. We are gratified by indications that the US whose national means have been very helpful in bringing indications of the tragedies to our attention intend to share all of their relevant information with the International Tribunal. We fully support the request that the Secretary-General submit a written report on the issue at hand, based - I stress - on all information available.

Ethnic cleansing is reprehensible no matter who conducts it and no matter what methods are used. With this in mind we are concerned by ethnic cleansing not only in Bosnia and Herzegovina but also in Croatia. And even though in Croatia the killings may have been fewer in number, even though they may not been organized, and even though in Croatia, a determined effort appears to be made to bring the perpetrators to justice, all this is irrelevant to the victim. The wretched old man whose throat is being slashed doesn't care whether he is one of thousands or merely of hundreds, doesn't care whether the knife was authorized or not. We are on the side of the victims.

The most awful of atrocities which we are dealing with here is that of Srebrenica. Melos was destroyed in 416 B.C. during the Peloponessian War, Carthage in 146 B.C. during the Third Punic War. The men of those cities were put to death, which appears to have been the fate of thousands of men in Srebrenica as well. The only difference between Srebrenica and these two cities of antiquity, whose destruction has marked the entire successive history of the world, was that Srebrenica women and children were not actually sold into slavery.

Some 18 months ago we were deliberating in this chamber the shelling of Gorazde. I reflected then that perhaps for its 50th birthday, the UN may receive a gift from the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina, perhaps a piece of art called, for example, The Fall of Gorazde. I suggested it could be exhibited outside our chamber, in the vicinity of Picasso's Guernica. Well, it seems I made a little mistake: the possible gift would more correctly be called The Fall of Srebrenica.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Liberia, 3577th meeting

A year ago, a Security Council mission visited Mozambique, to see what more the Council could do to help implement an agreement between belligerents there, an agreement that had pulled the country out of years of a civil war. I had the honor to serve on that mission. We witnessed processes of demobilization and voter registration, which eventually culminated in free elections. The ONUMOZ peace-keeping operation is today a term in UN history; fortunately, it is a term denoting success. The success of Mozambique and of ONUMOZ is a shining example. Our experience there should be studied, its success factors distilled and applied wherever else they are applicable.

Liberia seems to offer a chance for applying these lessons. The first building blocks of a lasting peace have at long last been put in place. At long last, all the main factions of the civil war have installed a Council of State and have agreed on a process of disengagement, encampment, disarmament and demobilization, and finally on preparations for elections to be held next August 20.

But the devil is in the details. Implementing this plan will surely run into any number of logistical difficulties, into the unwillingness of this or that party or of their local followers to take this or that concrete step. There will be ample opportunity for local flare-ups - and heaven knows there is an ample supply of arms in the country. And this is where the Mozambique example comes into play. In it, we can find inspiration as to how to wrestle the devil of the details to the ground.

Even so, the success to date is tremendous. We congratulate the parties themselves; we congratulate ECOWAS countries which have been shouldering the tremendous burden of fielding ECOMOG. And most certainly we congratulate the statesmen of Ghana and Nigeria for their steadfastness and singularity of purpose which have been so appropriately crowned with success.

My delegation wholeheartedly supports the draft resolution in front of us. The Czech Republic has been making a modest contribution to the peace process in Liberia; ours is the only European country which has fielded a certain number of military observers to take part in the work of UNOMIL, as indeed our observers took part in Mozambique. My authorities are currently studying a request to further augment the number of our observers in Liberia.

We wish the people of Liberia that they and their leaders might stay firmly on the course they have outlined for themselves, for Liberia to emerge yet again as a bastion of peace in Western Africa.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3575th meeting

The Czech Government welcomes the basic principles for a new shape of B+H that parties to the conflict agreed upon earlier today in Geneva. This agreement does not mean an end to the war, at least not quite yet. Nevertheless, it surely represents a milestone on the way to its peaceful settlement. The news from Geneva indicates the readiness of parties to the conflict not only to accept a peace proposal but also to implement it in good faith. We applaud the recent efforts of US diplomacy and the continuous efforts of the Contact Group members which have contributed tremendously to reaching this point.

We call upon parties to embark on the process sketched out in Geneva immediately. Time is of the essence. The process of reaching a political settlement should no longer be hostage to military extremists who bully and prevaricate, while massacring innocent civilians in one Bosnian city after another. The Czech Republic stresses that only unconditional and full implementation of all relevant Security Council resolutions and of the Geneva principles will guarantee a lasting settlement of this conflict.

The Czech Republic wishes to point out that not all areas of conflict have been dealt with. No points of agreement have yet been reached on Eastern Slavonia. Even though parties intend to return to this issue, we find this worrying. We feel this supports the view, which we share, that more vigilance - including a strengthening of UNCRO forces in the area - is appropriate.

In conclusion, let me emphasize the strong and unequivocal support of my country to the role the UN and NATO have jointly played and to the measures they have taken in recent weeks to prevent further shelling of civilian population in B+H and to bring the parties to the bargaining table.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Burundi, 3571st meeting

Burundi has for some time now been balancing on the edge of a precipice. With an ethnic composition very similar to that of neighboring Rwanda, and with distrust between the two ethnic groups similarly pronounced, there have been periodic fears that Burundi, too, might witness a Rwanda-style genocide.

The differences between the two countries, however, are very important as well. While Hutus constitute an overwhelming majority of the population of both countries, in Rwanda the Hutus had been also in control of the military and security. The Hutus in Burundi, on the other hand, have the numbers - but it was only in 1993 that they won a significant piece of the political pie, in the country's first democratic elections.

The results of those elections were tragically marred when in October of that year, the newly-elected President Ndadaye, whom the Hutus of the country thought of as their own Nelson Mandela, was assassinated. The culprits were never publicly identified, let alone brought to justice. And in the aftermath of the assassination, a tidal wave of revenge led to the slaughter of perhaps 50 000 people, mostly Tutsis. Again, culprits were never identified, let alone tried.

The political situation in the country has ever since been tottering from one crisis to the next, periodically verging on an explosion of one sort or another. The Security Council felt it necessary to dispatch two missions to the country in the last year or so, the only country in crisis which has received attention of this intensity. I have had the privilege of serving on both of these missions.

There is one or two indelible impressions Burundi leaves on a visitor. One is the corrosion of the body politic caused by what has been aptly described as "a culture of impunity". It is difficult to instill respect for human lives, let alone a sense of political responsibility, if crimes, even political crimes, even political assassinations, even an assassination of the country's president, go unpunished. The international Commission of Inquiry which would be set up according to the draft resolution in front of us would continue in the excellent work of the mission of Ambassadors Aké and Huslid whose sensitive report of May 1994 is mentioned in the first preambular paragraph of the draft. The persons identified as having participated in the assassination of President Ndadaye or in the subsequent slaughter of Tutsis which the Burundian authorities describe as genocide will then presumably be dealt with by the arm of the law - which in Burundi would demonstrate for the first time in years that crimes do lead to punishment.

There is one other indelible impression one gets in Burundi. With the 1993 elections, the country embarked on a democratic path. Democracy as the rule of the majority is one thing we all understand. In Burundi especially, though, democracy's other aspect comes into play - namely, the protection of minorities. The Tutsi minority now distrusts its country's democracy and sees sufficient self-protection only in having control of all the country's guns. Over the coming years, sufficient trust will have to develop between the two ethnic groups; trust which will allow all segments of the population to participate in all aspects of the country's life.

The Commission of Inquiry might be of assistance here as well: inasmuch as it might make recommendations concerning appropriate legal, political or administrative measures. For, such measures are probably necessary if Burundi is in the future to eschew not only the vortex of Rwanda, but also the twin dangers of a dictatorship based on the predominant majority of one ethnic group as well as a dictatorship based on a firepower monopoly of the other ethnic group.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Rwanda, 3566th meeting

One year after the end to the genocide in Rwanda, one year after the end of the civil war, Rwandan authorities and the people of Rwanda have attained great accomplish- ments in reconstructing their country. For this, they deserve our admiration and congratulations.

Problems remain, of course. Of these, none is more pressing than that of the refugees. Gathered in the millions in camps just outside the country, they are con-trolled, even terrorized by camp leaders, partisans of Rwanda's previous genocidal regime, on the one hand; on the other hand, they are being demoralized by the ready handouts provided through the international community's generosity - handouts that are an easier source of livelihood than working the fields of their home villages.

Even more disturbing are reports of arms trafficking in the camps and of possible preparations for another military conflagration in the area. This gives the camp leadership a rouge tinge, a Khmer Rouge tinge, to be exact. Perhaps the most significant aspect of the draft resolution under consideration is operative paragraph 2, which would kick off a process that will eventually, we hope, lead to a thorough investigation of arms flows in the region; and we are pleased that the Government of Zaire has expressed its support for a commission of inquiry which should be established to this effect.

If the return of refugees is hindered by their campmasters on the one side, they are not assured of a terribly warm welcome in Rwanda, on the other side. Unlike that of the camps, this is a situation over which Rwandan authorities have far greater control. Paradoxically, as domestic stability is ever more firmly established, the relative weight of responsibility for refugee return that falls on Rwandan authorities increases. The government must have as its constant priority improving conditions: both those that are tied directly to refugees' willingness to return, and those that shape the overall image of the country and thus influence their willingness to return at least indirectly.

Two of the latter aspects are particularly important: the situation in jails, and the justice system. The two are linked. There can be no excuse for 50.000 people to be languishing in jails a year after the end to the genocide - with no relief in sight, because no trials have started. It is imperative that the government, which we hear is not united in its view on these matters, demonstrate the necessary political will and resolve fundamental political issues that are delaying the process, namely:

the nomination of judges to the Supreme Court
the use of expatriate personnel in the judicial system
solving procedural irregularities that resulted from the emergency nature of most arrests.
Starting trials has to become a priority for all branches of government; the legislature and the executive have to cooperate with the judiciary for judicial action to begin.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3564th meeting

This Council expressed itself on the situation in Srebrenica and Zepa last month. What concerns us here today is the aftermath of the Bosnian Serbs having overrun these two safe areas, if that is the right expression.

Several thousand men and boys are missing. Bosnian Serb authorities have been refusing to provide any information about their fate or to allow the ICRC, or any other outside observer, access to them. We fear the worst; and these fears have only today been strengthened by an important report in the New York Times and by evidence presented to tthe Council by the US delegation. These reports suggest that those missing have become victim of one of the greatest atrocities of this war.

The possibility of several thousand Bosnians having been butchered recalls the memory of the Katyn forest where during World War II, Stalin's murderers similarly butchered several thousand officers of the Polish army.

Confirmation of these reports would raise the specter of war criminality in its most heinous form. Abuses by individuals occur in most wars. But wholesale murder of thousands requires organization and orders from high-level authorities. There is no doubt that these authorities, that is to say, every one of the responsible individuals, will be identified, tried by the International Tribunal, and forever stigmatized and ostracized by the international community.

This draft resolution started out as one dealing with the now-obsolete provisions of the arms embargo that resolution 918 imposed on Rwanda. The embargo was imposed on a genocidal regime, and many of us recall the sorry spectacle of a representative of that regime sitting at this table, making his objectionable presentation and voting against para.13 which imposed the embargo. Surely, a lot has changed since then.

Today we are in effect suspending the arms embargo for a little over a year, allowing it to terminate automatically unless the Council decides to reimpose it, based on a report that the Secretary-General is called upon to submit next August. In other words, Rwanda is not off the embargo hook entirely: and one hopes that progress in solving its domestic problems, and, for that matter, progress in resolving the camp-population issue, will be so clear that there will be no reason to reimpose it.

The embargo-suspending provisions of this draft resolution rightly emphasize two things: any arms flows into Rwanda must be destined solely for the Rwandan Government forces; that is to say, for no other forces in the country, and for the forces of no other Government outside the country. The free-for-all arms bazaar is one of the greatest scourges of the countries in the region.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Croatia, 3563rd meeting

The Government of Croatia has long intended to reintegrate parts of its sovereign territory that had been under control of secessionist Croat Serb authorities. This was Croatia's sovereign right and it can hardly be faulted for taking steps to this end. What my Government, however, does find strongly deplorable is the fact that Croatian authorities elected to do so by military means, even at a time when not all diplomatic avenues had been exhausted. It has always been the position of my Government that a political solution was preferable, and we are still not convinced that such a solution was impossible.

One consequence of taking Knin and the former Sectors South and North is a wave of refugees unparalleled in the war to date, in a war which has already seen the most dramatic population shifts in Europe since the aftermath of World War II.

This refugee wave amounts to massive ethnic cleansing of vast areas of Croatia. Whether the Serb refugees are leaving on their own account or not is immaterial; and we view with skepticism Croat observations that Serb propaganda is solely responsible for their exodus, and assertions that Serbs are welcome in a post-Krajina Croatia.

Croatian authorities will of course not hold people back by force. But they also bear a heavy responsibility to assure elementary dignity of the refugees and unconditionally to protect their human rights. Shelling refugee columns is not the best way of demonstrating respect for these rights. They also have great responsibilities toward those ethnic Serbs who do elect to stay and to those who may decide to return. In fact, my Government urges them to create conditions in the newly reintegrated territories which will not only be conducive to stanching the refugee outflow but which will also facilitate and encourage the return of refugees.

Croatian authorities decided to launch their military offensive literally over the heads of UNCRO personnel. Some, including two of my countrymen, lost their lives in the process. Others were gravely abused. Even today, UNCRO and other UN personnel do not have the freedom of movement they urgently need to fulfil their obligations. We deplore the abuse to which certain Croat commanders exposed UNCRO personnel, and demand appropriate measures to be taken against them. We call for full freedom of movement of UN personnel. But even as we in the Czech Republic mourn our dead, we are determined to continue shouldering our international responsibilities by our contribution to UNCRO.

Let me here express heartfelt thanks, on behalf of my Government, to the expressions of condolences we have received in this chamber and during informal consultations, and extend our own condolences to the Government of the Kingdom of Denmark.

The situation of UNCRO has changed dramatically, and we are anxiously awaiting recommendations from the Secretary-General on how best to modify its mandate. We anticipate a need to strengthen UN presence in Eastern Croatia, in the area adjacent to the FRY. As for this area, we strongly warn Croatian authorities against seeking a military solution; for in our analysis, such an attempt could lead to a full-fledged war involving far greater military forces, territory and civilian population, a war that would eclipse anything the South Slav states have witnessed so far. In this context, we appreciate the responsible attitude that states of the region have demonstrated to date, and appeal to all parties to seek a solution to the issue of Eastern Slavonia through peaceful means.

In conclusion, we ought to acknowledge that an incidental result of Croatian military action was to end the siege of Bihac. This is an important result from several points of view; how important it was from the humanitarian point of view is particularly evident when contrasting the fate of the men of Bihac with those of Srebrenica, which we will consider in our very next meeting.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Western Sahara, 3550th meeting

The issue of Western Sahara has been festering for too long a time now, and it is imperative that the processes underway continue - however unsatisfactory has been their pace. My Government is absolutely sure that negotiations are the only way to move ahead, and that the UN provides the best possible vehicle for mediating these negotiations. We are therefore feel that Polisario Front's recent decision to suspend its participation in the talks is unwise, to say the least, and appeal to it to resume negotiations.

On the other hand, we understand the stong emotional charge that provoked this step. The heavy sentences meted out against eight Saharan youths appear to us to be excessive, irrespective of their specific alleged offences. We maintain all due respect for the differing penal codes of different countries; but feel the Moroccan authorities would be very wise to make a political gesture by reconsidering these sentences - be it by their legal review, by amnesty, clemency, or some other appropriate instrument. The episode with the Saharan youths, although a very painful one, should not be allowed to affect the broader objective of moving toward the referendum, in accordance with the Settlement Plan

As for participation in the referendum, it will of course be decided by the Ientification Commission. We have no doubt that the Commission will scrupulously adhere to the precisely defined criteria for deciding who is and who is not eligible to particiate. We would favor the identification of persons now resident outside the area to take place wherever they now reside.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Liberia, 3549th meeting

Liberia is in imminent danger of becoming another failure for peace-keeping efforts of the UN. It has been said all too often that there is no place for peace-keepers where there's no peace to keep. This is demonstrably the case in this tormented country. The factions of the civil war are splitting into ever smaller, ever more vicious, ever more self-centered splinter groups whose members are frequently interested in little more than self-aggrandizement, personal gain, killing for the sake of killing, and drugs.

It is precisely the people of Liberia who bear the ultimate responsibility for achieving peace and national reconciliation. The price the international community is prepared to pay to help them in this effort is fast reaching its limits.

Last time we discussed Liberia in this forum, there was a glimmer of hope extended by the factions: the meeting in Abuja. That meeting was postponed from one date to the next, and in the end achieved results which, to be generous, we can only describe as modest. Charles Taylor's absence in Abuja was in our view inexcusable.

Today these same factions are dangling another promise of hope in front of the Security Council. But many of us are fed up. We have voted on extending UNOMIL's mandate for another two months and a half. But we insist that during this period, the wrangling concerning Liberia's Council of State finally end and that it be installed, that a real cease-fire come into effect, that all forces disengage and that a serious timetable be agreed upon to deal with all other aspects of the Akosombo and Accra agreements, especially in disarmament. The factions are understandably interested in keeping UNOMIL in the country, if only for economic reasons, but also for public-relations purposes. But my country, for one, which for several years now has contributed soldiers to UNOMIL, will be hard pressed not to demand its withdrawal if, come September, the conditions outlined in operative paragraph 4 of today's resolution No. 1001 are not met.

Of course, if left alone, factions can fight only up to a point, only until their resources are exhausted. We therefore highlight again the importance of the arms embargo this Council has imposed on Liberia. And we note with distress that external support, and what the Secretary General delicately describes as "lack of harmonization" of policies of Liberia's neighbors, contribute to the tearing of that country asunder. To note in the preamble of today's resolution that a "concerted and harmonized effort...would be helpful to advance the peace process" is a very self-effacing way of telling Liberia's neighbors, Stop meddling! Stop supplying the factions with arms! Stop pursuing your own objectives at the expense of Liberia's peace!

There is one other troubling aspect of the Liberian situation, namely the shortcomings in cooperation between UNOMIL and ECOMOG. The parallel and concerted functioning of the two forces has been viewed as a model for Chapter-VIII- style cooperation between a UN observer mission and a regional force in other parts of the world. It is therefore all the more troubling that at the working level, this cooperation "has not always been satisfactory", to quote the Secretary-General. We salute the ECOWAS countries which have been shouldering the burden of ECOMOG but are particularly concerned that ECOMOG provide the necessary security for UNOMIL personnel, in line with the Cotonou Agreement, as specified in operative paragraph 12 of the resolution we have just adopted.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3543rd meeting

The disparity between the objectives and mandate of UNPROFOR and the wherewithal at its disposal has always been one of the most vexing problems bedevilling that operation. In seeking compliance with Security Council resolutions, and indeed in protecting its own personnel, UNPROFOR has had a widely bifurcated choice between two options: its own persuasive abilities, or air power.

UNPROFOR's persuasive abilities, never a terribly strong choice, have been dissipating with every additional failure, with every additional concession. And yet UNPROFOR leadership demonstrated a marked reluctance, distaste even, for employing air power - a reluctance that bothered many observers who felt it overly cautious. As events of the past weeks demonstrated, the caution was appropriate. From the military point of view, UNPROFOR indeed turned out to be extremely vulnerable, and the Bosnian Serb hostage taking demonstrated that for all to see.

The taking of hostages is reprehensible and despicable. It has been described as a terrorist act, and we agree with that description. It can not be tolerated by the international community. The hostage crisis is a crisis for all of UNPROFOR, at least, and is the main reason why the Czech Republic supports, indeed has co-sponsored, this draft resolution.

On the initiative of France and Britain, the two countries whose UNPROFOR contingents are the largest, and of the Netherlands, we are now authorizing the sending of a rapid-reaction force which will bring into better alignment the mandate of UNPROFOR and the means at its disposal. A tank or an APC is surely the appropriate instrument to assure safe passage through sniper or ambush territory or to remove obstacles to the delivery of humanitarian supplies, the kind of instrument we have always needed. It will not help release the hostages who are still in captivity, and we have two of our own nationals among them; but surely it will prevent a repetition of such a course of action. In this respect, the RRF fills the space between persuasion and air power.

Several aspects of this resolution are important for us: It preserves the peace- keeping nature of UNPROFOR. It is easy to argue - now, regrettably and alarmingly, perhaps even more than at other times - that in Bosnia and Herzegovina, there is no peace to keep; but the important aspect is that, peace or not, UNPROFOR is not turning into a peace-making or a peace-enforcement operation. For this reason, too, we are satisfied that Chapter VII of the Charter is invoked only in the context of UNPROFOR's self-defense and freedom of movement, and is in this respect not breaking any new ground. We also reiterate the impartial status of UNPROFOR. The Security Council thus through this resolution emphasizes once again that peaceful negotiations, not war, is the way to settle the conflict; peaceful negotiations which should take the Contact Group peace plan as a staring point.

We are happy to have the very welcome agreement of the Government of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzcegovina with the RRF deployment and from the legal point of view, no other party can veto it, of course. However, practical considerations make it necessary that conversations and contacts proceed with all parties, in order to win their acquiescence, if not agreement; at least ex post facto, if not in advance. We encourage the Secretary-General to proceed with efforts along these lines.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in occupied Arab territories, 3538th meeting

The position of my country on the current situation in Jerusalem was expressed through you, Mr. President, when you delivered the statement of the European Union during this Council's recent meeting on this agenda item.

Today, I will add just one or two remarks. Whatever the motivations for doing so and whatever its purpose, we find the expropriation of land in East Jerusalem to be ill-timed, unwise, and indeed in violation of relevant Security Council resolutions. We do, however, take note of the decision of the Israeli Government of 14 May 1995, according to which it has no intention of carrying out additional expropriation of land in Jerusalem for housing purposes, and we would have preferred this decision to have been reflected in our resolution. On the other hand, one wonders: Since the Israeli Government has no expropriative intentions for the future, how indispensable was it to expropriate land last month?

The Declaration of Principles envisages a discussion of issues affecting Jerusalem to take place in a little more distant future. Also, it envisages resolving issues such as this one by the two parties themselves. We are sorry this did not happen. Of course this does not stop the Security Council from dealing with a matter which violates the spirit, if not perhaps the letter, of the Declaration and it is therefore quite proper to have debated the issue here and to vote on the draft.

In conclusion I wish to reiterate my country's wholehearted support for the Middle East peace process. We are looking forward to a speedy implementation of the Declaration in its entirety.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Croatia, 3537th meeting

The Czech Republic has been consistently concerned with developments in countries of the South Slavs, and perhaps mostly with Croatia: for it is precisely here that a Czech mechanized battalion has been active for several years as part of UNPROFOR, now being transformed into UNCRO.

We have been aware of the long-standing matters of difference between UNPROFOR and Croatian authorities, which eventually led Croatia to give notice to the UN peace-keeping force. This difficult issue eventually got resolved to what appeared to be everybody's satisfaction, with the authorization of UNCRO in resolution 981, and providing for its mandate in resolution 990.

One of the reasons for the intensive international effort to keep peace-keepers in Croatia was that there actually was a peace to keep - certainly since the March 1994 cease-fire agreement. It was a difficult peace, with very slow progress toward national reconciliation. Nevertheless, progress there was: and the Economic Agreement of December 1994 was one of its most important manifestations. The alternative to a UN presence, many felt, was an all-out war.

All the more surprising therefore was the Croatian Government offensive against Sector West some two weeks ago. And even this apparently limited military move may have been only a part of a broader pattern. For, in other sectors, too, Croatian Government forces penetrated the zones of separation and appeared to be digging in for the long term.

This move exposed our peacekeepers to hostile fire and thus endangered them in an absolutely unacceptable fashion. Our resolution focuses on securing the complete withdrawal of Croatian forces from the zones of separation with no further procrastination, whilst acknowledging the extent of the withdrawal effected to date. It further calls for strict observance of the human rights of Croatian Serbs in western Slavonia. It also pays due attention to the Economic Agreement, and especially to safety and security along the crucial Zagreb-Belgrade hiway.

All of these points should drive home one message: Zagreb should inextricably associate itself with the logic of peace. Military adventures might be tempting - but will certainly not be condoned by this Council.

This resolution reacts mostly to actions of the Croatian Government and its forces. The Croatian Serb party, however, has not lagged behind in taking control of adjacent parts of the zones of separation. The resolution has not fogotten this fact, and therefore the meaning of operative paragraph 2 is to demand a complete withdrawal of both parties, and of paragraph 10 that both parties refrain from taking further military actions. This Council will be very carefully following future developments.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Abkhazia, Georgia, 3535th meeting

The situation in Abkhazia and its fallout on the rest of Georgia can be characterized in one sentence: nothing much has changed, and this is on balance bad. My delegation, for one, is alarmed by this state of affairs. Several points are worth making in elaborating this one sentence.

First point: The key to resolving the situation is the return of those who have fled Abkhazia to their former homes. Whatever political understanding might eventually be reached by politicians of the parties, it would be intolerable if this understanding were based on demographic changes that have been brought about by military means. There are some 200,000 refugees and displaced persons, and only the tiniest trickle of them is returning under the voluntary repatriation program; and my delegation is pleased that we are invoking the UNHCR timetable for the return of displaced persons. The main obstacle to their return is - still - the continuing intransigent position of Abkhaz authorities.

Second point: The most problematic region is Gali. This is where most displaced people are from, this is where most of them therefore want to return to, yet this is where lawlessness is most rampant. The return of the original population to Gali should be the cornerstone of the whole repatriation program. But in order to succeed, their basic human rights have to be respected - a task for which UNOMIG does not have a mandate, let alone the wherewithal. We therefore request the Secretary-General to look into possibilities that might be available for improving the observance of human rights in the region in general.

Third point: What has been going on in Abkhazia is ethnic cleansing. Resolution 993 which we have just adopted recognizes this fact but couches it in inpenetrable language. Instead of calling a spade a spade, our resolution refers to a garden - assuming that the reader will grasp that there is a toolshed in the garden, and a spade in the toolshed. This language should be decoded, of course, if only for the record.

We thus want to underscore that paragraph 7, which recalls the 1994 Budapest Summit Declaration of the CSCE, is intended to refer especially to the following sentence in that document:

[The participating States] expressed their deep concern over "ethnic cleansing", the massive expulsion of people, predominantly Georgian, from their living areas and the deaths of large numbers of innocent civilians. (S/1994/1435, p.20)

Fourth point: While we are anxious for any political solution to the crisis that would be agreeable to both the Government of Georgia and to the Abkhaz leaders, we welcome their understanding that such a solution be based on Georgia's territorial integrity. A federal arrangement for the country would be very appropriate, with devolving as much autonomy as feasible to its constituent parts. But we don't see much merit in a confederation, which in practice would amount to a break-up of the country, or in any "federation of independent entities" which in practice would amount to a confederation and thus again to the break-up of the country. This is why the resolution welcomes and encourages consultations regarding a new constitution for the country based precisely on federal principles.

In this context, we reiterate our full confidence in Ambassador Brunner's efforts in this regard, undertaken on behalf of the Secretary-General. We also appreciate the assistance provided by the Russian Federation, as facilitator, and of the OSCE, in searching for a comprehensive political settlement. Coordination among these several organisms is, of course, an absolute must.

Fifth and final point, on UNOMIG and CIS forces: We are heartened and encouraged by their cooperation. At this moment, they constitute a stabilizing factor, rather than a factor that is resolving the problem. Without their presence, though, another flare-up of uncontrollable hostilities would be extremely likely. This is why we are in favor of extending the UNOMIG mandate, and welcome that the CIS forces apparently intend to stay until the end of 1995. We are grateful for information that the Russian delegation provides on the CIS operation, and would be even more grateful if it were more frequent and in writing.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in the occupied Arab territories, 3505th meeting

The Czech Republic reaffirms its attachment to a just, durable and comprehensive settlement of the Palestinian question and of the entire Arab-Israeli conflict, on the basis of Security Council resolutions 242 and 338 and within the agreed framework of international law. This includes the necessity for applying the 4th Geneva Convention of 1949.

In recent years, efforts toward attaining a settlement of the conflict have resulted in the on-going peace process. The Czech Republic accepts and supports it without reservation. We are heartened by the progress it has attained since the Washington Declaration of Principles was signed more than two years ago.

Important steps followed last year: the Gaza-Jericho Agreement of last May, the Agreement on the Preparatory Transfer of Powers and Responsibilities of last August, and of course the Peace Treaty between Israel and Jordan of last October.

The issue of Israeli settlements in occupied territories is a difficult and emotionally charged one. The Czech Government considers settlements to be illegal and not conducive to the peace process. And yet, the Israeli government has effected important changes in this policy. Whatever reservations one might have about the current shape of this policy, these changes should be noted. Even more importantly, though, this issue is just one aspect of the exceedingly complex web of Israeli - Palestinian relations; and we believe that this entire web is best left to the continuation of bilateral negotiations, however difficult these are turning out to be, outside the spotlight of international attention.

We feel that some of the difficulties in the progress of bilateral negotiations stem from recent acts of brutal violence. A year ago in March, this Council strongly condemned the slaughter in Hebron. Today it is worth reiterating that the Czech Republic condemns all terrorism under any circumstances, whatever its motivation.

Statement of H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the question of Haiti, 3496th meeting

My delegation has been following closely the activities of the Multinational Force in Haiti, and is delighted both with the substantial progress that has been attained, and with the way it has been attained - i.e., largely non-violently. Indeed, it is hard to recall many other changes of the political order as radical as the one that has occurred in Haiti where the level of violence in resolving the crisis would have been as low - especially in view of the high level of violence that prevailed while the crisis itself lasted. We congratulate the MNF and the people of Haiti for this remarkable accomplishment.

We note with great satisfaction that the situation in observing human rights and the security situation in the country have immensely improved over the past few months. However, a lot remains to be done; the previous regime appears to have been so corrupt that purging the security and judicial apparatus, to name just two, of unwelcome elements has led to their almost total collapse. The task of the new government is thus to build them up from scratch, a task even more arduous than just revamping them.

At the same time, all dangers to the country's fledgling democracy have not disappeared. We feel that a truly terrifying amount of arms is circulating or is cached in the country, and we are uncertain about the paramilitary elements that seem to be hibernating for the moment, maybe awaiting a more propitious moment to show signs of life again. Efforts to disarm them may not have been assiduous enough so far.

These are some of the reasons why we understand the need for a massive infusion of UN personnel, to take over from the MNF, and this step meets with our full approval. Resolution 940 (1994) anticipates that UNMIH's task will be accomplished no later than February 1996; and we hope that this will be long enough a period for it to complete its job.

President Aristide has attained some important political successes, especially by having consolidated his cabinet. We are encouraged by the definite steps that have been taken toward holding parliamentary elections and encourage Haiti's authorities to hold them at the earliest convenient time. We have every expectation that once they take place, the UN will certify them as having been free and fair.

By successfully completing the task it was authorized to undertake by operative paragraph 4 of resolution 940 (1994), the MNF has demonstrated the usefulness in some circumstances of the Security Council entrusting groups of States with enforcement action. We see this as an exceptional measure, when all else fails, but following the non-implementation of the Governors Island Agreement, we saw that in Haiti, all else indeed did fail. In following the progress of the MNF, the Security Council benefitted from frequent, detailed and on-the-record reports provided on behalf of the MNF by the US delegation. We are grateful for this reporting effort. We salute and thank all members of the MNF and wish equal success to the new UNMIH force.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the question of Mozambique, 3494th meeting

It is indeed a pleasure and an honor to have amongst us today H.E. Leonardo Santos Simao, the Foreign Minister of the new Mozambique Government, whom I most cordially welcome on behalf of my delegation. He epitomizes the success story of his own people and their political leaders, and of UN peacekeeping. Traversing the period since 4 October 1992 when the opposing parties in the Mozambican civil war signed in Rome the General Peace Agreement has not always been easy, not always has there been every ground for optimism. I recall a feature last year in the New York Times Sunday Magazine which dealt with developments in Mozambique almost as an example of all that can go wrong. And yet, here we are, greeting in the personage of the Foreign Minister an accomplishment of great importance.

During last fall's general debate in the General Assembly, my Foreign Minister, Mr. Josef Zieleniec, highlighted the case of Mozambique as an important case study from which the appropriate lessons ought to be drawn. He suggested that the following were among the success factors at play here: "a well-crafted peace plan; a realistic mandate for the UN force; the politicians concerned putting the interests of their country above all else; tenacity of UN personnel carrying out their mandate". The way we are trying to use these or similarly defined factors as a gauge in other operations is evident, e.g., from the SG's reflections in his recent Supplement to the Agenda for Peace.

Even during this moment of celebration, though, we are all aware of the success not being all-encompassing. The residue of its long civil war persists in the country in a number of ways. We are disturbed by the amount of weapons that circulate freely. The SG's recent remarks concerning "micro-disarmament" are very pertinent in this context. Mine clearance will entail a long and arduous effort. And conversely, fatigue with war has slowed the building up of the country's new democratic army.

Apart from these tasks, we see three types of challenges ahead: political ones, economic ones, and UN-connected ones.

Mozambique's democracy is very, very young and very fragile, and small wonder. Strengthening it will require careful nurturing for years to come. However, we are encouraged that in their election programs, both major parties declared their adherence to the important principles of protecting the peace and pursuing a policy of national reconciliation. Mozambique can and should become a model for other countries, especially in Africa, by demonstrating that winning elections does not necessarily lead to the arrogance of power and, conversely, that losing elections does not lead to political obliteration. Both of the country's major parties have over the years demonstrated their viability and both have no doubt contributions to make, in one form or another, to the country's future. It is hard to exaggerate how important a flourishing democracy in Mozambique will be for the stability of entire southern Africa, including tormented Angola.

Both parties also focused on raising living standards, and this is the country's second challenge. Mozambique is today one of the poorest countries of the world, when measured by the economic standards of its people, and even my quick visit there as member of the Security Council Mission left an indelible impression of its poverty. The task of improving the lot of the people will perhaps be the toughest of all. But the support for a market-economy development model which both parties profess is encouraging. In our experience, at least, it is the fastest way for mobilizing hidden resources of entrepreneurship and industriousness that the country has, including for example those Mozambican expatriates who, having received international assistance to complete their studies abroad, have so far not returned to contribute to their home country.

Given these political and economic issues, it is imperative that the UN maintain a strong and well-coordinated presence in Mozambique, and this is our third challenge. ONUMOZ, to which Czech military observers contributed as well, is leaving but we cannot in good conscience let the fragile success of peace collapse under the weight of a myriad post-war problems. Peace-building, peace reinforcement, peace nurturing is what Mozambique needs, with the indispensable assistance of the international community, including the UN. This is not the time, and Mozambique is not the place, to let various UN agencies do their own thing without tight coordination and without strong political leadership. We therefore sincerely hope that the SG will maintain in Maputo a well-defined political presence.

The success of Mozambique is real but it has been greatly underreported. Dramatic successes are perhaps not as attractive to the press as dramatic failures. In the opinion of my delegation, though, what we have learned in Mozambique is extremely valuable not only in connection with one country, one peace-keeping operation, but also as a model to be emulated in other peace-keeping situations. We congratulate once again the ONUMOZ force and its leaders, the SG and his Special Representative, Dr. Aldo Ajello, Mozambique's political leaders, but above all, we congratulate the people of Mozambique.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the Agenda for Peace, 3492nd meeting

Some three months ago, H.E. Mr. Josef Zieleniec, my Foreign Minister, highlighted in his statement to the General Assembly some success factors of those peace-keeping operations that have worked and contrasted them with some of the struggling ones. "We have to draw the necessary lessons", he said, and this is exactly what the Secretary-General and his collaborators have done by summarizing and assessing the experiences that have transpired in our efforts to maintain international peace and security in the past few years.

Why such a synthesis was called for is clear from the statistics the SG presents on the upsurge of these activities since 1988, a period during which the number of PKO's increased from five to 17. The statistics imply that during this time period, the number of military personnel deployed in the average PKO has just about doubled, and the annual cost of the average PKO has increased almost five times. It would seem that the average PKO today is much more resource-intensive than it was six or seven years ago.

The question is, of course, whether an "average PKO" is a useful concept. While correct, are the above inferences relevant? Some insights might be garnered from disaggregating extant PKO's by size.

Today, UNPROFOR is in a class of itself. Disregarding the rapidly diminishing UNOSOM II, UNPROFOR, with its almost 40,000 people, is by an entire order of magnitude larger than the next group of operations.

This next group includes UNIFIL, UNAMIR and until recently ONUMOZ, with some5,000 people each.

UNFICYP, UNDOF and UNIKOM have about 1,000 each,

and finally the remaining nine operations each feature a few dozen to a few hundred people.

Now, when we exclude UNPROFOR and UNOSOM II from the total sample, the analysis of the changing size of PKO's looks quite different. Outside these two operations we are fielding only some 20,000 people in PKO's and the average size of a PKO has actually decreased from around 2,000 personnel in 1988 to fewer than 1,400 today.

The SG disaggregates PKOs qualitatively, as he analyses the changes in the nature of conflicts that they deal with. One important change is the shift from purely international conflicts that had been the predominant concern of the SC in earlier years to conflicts which are either domestic ones outright or which follow on the heels of the disintegration of a larger state.

This type of conflict entails different characteristics. Adversaries do not include only well-defined armies facing each other along a well-defined line. Rather, ill-defined and uncoordinated armed groups often operate throughout the territory, not only fighting their armed adversaries but also preying on or outright attacking civilian populations.

This situation calls for a different, far more complex, response of peace-keepers, and, by implication, a different mandate. The SG makes the very interesting distinction between classical PKO's and multifunctional ones. In multifunctional operations, peace- keepers have much more to do: in addition to their traditional task of monitoring buffer zones and cease-fires, they provide humanitarian relief and protect humanitarian operations of other agencies and NGO's. Even more importantly perhaps, their political role is heightened: they nurture in a myriad ways the implementation in the field of a settlement reached at a conference table. The list of specific tasks, and the report contains one, is indeed long.

Two big examples of multifunctional operations are provided: Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Somalia. We note that the success of the first of these operations has been rather limited, limited so far largely to preventing the expansion and dousing the intensity of the fighting, while the second operation has been, in political terms at least, largely unsuccessful.

This lack of success may well have been caused by burdening the mandates of these operations with tasks that implicitly required the use of force, mandates that were thus based on the logic of peace-enforcement rather than of peace-keeping. The SG suggests that such tasks included protecting humanitarian operations during continued warfare, protecting civilian populations in safe areas, and pressing for reconciliation rather faster than the parties could handle.

These are very serious points, and since it is the Security Council that draws up the mandates of PKO's, albeit on the recommendation of the Secretariat, they deserve our serious reflection. For, it is probably not a coincidence that precisely the two largest PKO's which together skew the overall statistics are on the one hand the most typical multifunctional ones, and, on the other hand, among the less successful ones. In studying the lessons they offer we will be touching on the limits of the possible in PKO's. One immediate lesson is that simply continuing to increase the size of a PKO leads simply to diminishing returns. What I mean is that even the largest peace-keeping operation cannot enforce peace, whilst enforcement may be a task beyond our capacities. It may indeed be that when enforcement is needed, we well-nigh have to look to the mechanism of farming out the task, e.g., to groups of states, as outlined in the subchapter on "Enforcement action".

Nevertheless, of the several instruments at our disposal for sefaguarding peace and security, peace-keeping is still among the principal ones, the one employed most often and the one with which we have the greatest experience.

And to what ends? Once we treat UNPROFOR and UNOSOM as special cases, we end up with a mixed bag of results. We have the "classics", UNTSO, UNMOGIP, UNFICYP, UNDOF and UNIFIL, in place for 15, 20, 30, even 45 years or more, in situations where the UN has well-nigh ran out of steam, ideas, often even initiative, and where any further change is most likely going to depend on events beyond the control of this organization. We are in a holding pattern. The SG might as well remind us that "international problems cannot be solved quickly or within a limited time". We should not lose sight of the fact that a PKO is not an end in itself but rather a means toward the political settlement of a conflict. And if the settlement is nowhere on the horizon, does the time never come when we pack up and go?

Of the more recent operations, some are clearly successful, and ONUMOZ is an outstanding example of these, and let me stress that it was a multifunctional operation par excellence; others are grinding away toward a resolution more or less fuzzily outlined on the horizon. Reflecting upon them indicates very clearly one important point - they are all different, every one is sui generis. None of these PKO's is even four years old, and fully a half of them are less than two years old. But even within this group, to be able to chalk up accomplishments in El Salvador, Namibia and Cambodia, in addition to Mozambique, is in an of itself a source of encouragement and pride.

x x x

After these general remarks, allow me to merely touch on the different instruments for strengthening peace and security mentioned in the report.

We agree with the SG (and who wouldn't?) that preventive diplomacy is preferable to resolving a conflict that has turned violent. The domestic nature of most conflicts is of course a difficulty here. We share the opinion that states should be automatically willing to accept the good offices of the UN, however far we may still be from this doctrine. Resorting to Article 2, paragraph 7 of the Charter is one way of legally buttressing these UN efforts. We would, however, hope that flagrant violations of human rights might in and of themselves constitute a good enough reason for the UN to step in. We draw attention to the OSCE which has agreed that the principle of non-interference does not apply to situations affecting human-rights protection.

For preventive diplomacy, one needs "preventive diplomats" of which there is a dearth. It is perhaps of interest that the OSCE is developing a database of qualified, capable personalities. This is an idea the UN might wish to adopt, and perhaps even cooperate with the OSCE in utilizing its resources.

A number of important issues are discussed in the sub-chapter on peace-keeping. We are often frustrated by the lack of information, even as we acknowledge the value of information the Secretariat provides at just about every informal consultation of the Council. Still, we will continue to be bewildered every time we hear from other sources, for example from the press, of developments that clearly affect the situation on the ground - and which the Secretariat is not in a position to confirm or deny. The need for full substantiation of statements is clear; nevertheless, one wanders whether the omission, albeit unwitting, of important facts does not sometimes have the same effect as the commission of informational blunders.

Unity of command is a principle we wholeheartedly support. Everyone else does, too. So where's the problem? We would appreciate an evaluation of why it has been breached in some instances. Was it a manifestation of a government's fickleness? Was it a result of excessive sensitivity to domestic public opinion? (And who but the local politician can be the arbiter of this?) Or, was it perhaps a manifestation of lack of trust in the existing command? And if so, are we doing all we can to appoint only highest-calibre, universally respected soldiers to commanding posts?

We have taken note of the SG's disapproving remarks in this sub-chapter concerning the Security Council's alleged increasing propensity for micro-management. Other critical remarks addressed to the Council occur elsewhere in the document. We reserve the right to discuss these important issues on some other occasion.

The sub-chapter on disarmament contains very important points on what the SG has privately described as "macro-disarmament", dealing with weapons of mass destruction. My Government is very keen on being a part of these efforts, but we feel other opportunities might be even more suitable for their in-depth discussion. For the record, though, let me stress the importance we attach to the forthcoming conference of the parties to the NPT, and to the early entering into force of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

As for "micro-disarmament", my country supports efforts to limit the arms trade. The position and policies of my country since 1990 are well known. Suffice it to say that micro-disarmament as an issue cannot be separated from the world arms trade - with all the complexities that entails. We contribute information to the UN Register of Conventional Weapons. We also support efforts to reduce civilian casualties of land mines and have taken important national steps to this end.

As for sanctions, setting clear-cut criteria for imposing and lifting them would perhaps be desirable. We see a difference here between the political role of setting such criteria in every individual case, and the technical role of determining whether the criteria have been met. We really ought to avoid making the impression that the Security Council is "moving the goal posts" while the game is on, even if developments in the target country do not follow our original expectations.

Sanctions are indeed a double-edged sword. Let us clearly state that well-targeted sanctions do have an important role to play. On the other hand, though, we know that they often stimulate the mobilization of domestic resources, in the short run at least they often strengthen rather than weaken the intended political target, they may inspire mistrust of the population in the international community. Gaps in a sanction regime have a multiplier detrimental effect on their overall effectiveness and can exacerbate their counterproductive aspects, giving rise to ingenious ways of further obviating their intended role.

The effect of sanctions on third countries is the unfairest side effect. No argument can be found for justifying the suffering of a third country which follows strictly from the accident of its geographical proximity. Quite frankly, though, we don't know of any simple solution, and are grateful to the SG for his efforts, albeit so far fruitless ones, in exploring some novel avenues.

Despite certain doubts we all have about the effectiveness of sanctions and their impact on vulnerable segments of the civilian population, they are, nevertheless, one of the very few instruments we have at our disposal. We do, however, by and large support the SG's recommendations contained in paragraph 75 of his report.

In a separate chapter, the SG discusses cooperation with regional organizations. Two of the forms such cooperation can take is co-deployment and joint operations. My delegation is particularly taken by the four principles he stresses for such cooperation, namely

a. establishing an agreed mechanism for consultation

b. respecting the primacy of the UN

c. clearly defining the division of tasks

d. consistency, e.g., of PKO standards

Elsewhere, the SG discusses in a fresh way enforcement action by groups of states. Recalling the war in Korea usefully reminds us that this concept was not invented recently, even though it is only recently that it has been employed with any frequency. What we would recommend is some reflection as to whether the same or similar principles that apply to peace-keeping cooperation between the UN and regional organizations should not also explicitly apply to the UN and the ad hoc groups of states entrusted with enforcement.

In this regard we would like to see an additional principle emphasized, the principle

of transparency. Two elements should be considered here: First, the need for regular information being provided by UN sources on the performance of the regional organization or group of states, information that would pay particular attention to the enforcer's impartiality. The second element is the need for up-to-date information provided by the regional organization or group of states itself to the Security Council. These principles are by-and-large being observed today but we would like to see them become a truly integral and routine part of our decision-making.

In conclusion, let me thank the Secretary-General and his team for the extraordinary document he has presented. Not touching on every one of its aspects suggests how rich it is, rather than a lack of interest on our part. The Security Council, dealing as it does day in and day out with the world's fires, seldom has the time and opportunity to sit back and contemplate the broader picture. The urgent usually pushes out the important. The document we are discussing provides us precisely with the important, with the broader picture, and we will draw on it for a long time to come, I am sure.

And also let me at this point pay homage to the thousands of men and women whose dedicated work has allowed the SG to observe that "more progress has been made in the past few years towards using the United Nations as it was designed to be used than many could ever had predicted", and especially to salute those who in this effort have laid down their lives.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Karel Kovanda, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic on the Security Council on the situation in Abkhazia, Georgia, 3488th meeting

Today, we have little reason for optimism. The main problems of the crisis under review, namely the humanitarian situation and the political process, have barely budged since our last meeting on this issue.

The humanitarian situation resulting from the conflict and the fate of Georgia's 1/4 million refugees and displaced persons (DP's) have always been the primary preoc- cupation of my country in this issue. In this context, we are horrified by the complete non-progress of their repatriation. Fewer than 500 people of the 1/4 million have been repatriated voluntarily over the past three months - which is absolutely laughable. At this pace, it would take about 182 years before it is completed. And it is a small wonder that under these circumstances, spontaneous repatriation is under-way, with all the risks it entails. But even that has affected only a few tens of thousands of people, according to information provided by the Russian delegation, i.e., a small fraction of the total refugee population.

Meanwhile in Georgia itself, these refugees and DP's have been forgotten by the world. They suffer outside the field of vision of CNN cameras, and their suffering has resulted among other in a full-blown health crisis: recently we dealt here with approving the export of some vaccine for diptheria - one of the diseases now plaguing Georgia. And it is pitiful that the UNHCR operation, the one organization that does help, is facing a financial crisis that might force it to curtail its work in one of the world's spots where it is needed most.

Repatriation has to be speeded up by at least two orders of magnitude, so that its end can be timed in months, not centuries. My delegation is in fact particularly chagrined that this draft resolution makes no reference to a repatriation timetable such as the one the UNHCR has repeatedly proposed, in vain, to the Quadripartite Commission dealing with refugee issues; nor does this draft propose any other measure that would refocus our attention on the need to bring refugees and DP's back to their villages and fields.

No movement on humanitarian issues of course follows from the absence of movement on political issues - the two are interrelated. We are distressed that no progress has been made in the last six weeks or so to resolve the political and constitutional crisis. If anything, the crisis deepened when Abkhaz leaders very unadvisedly adopted certain unilateral constitutional steps.

In the light of these steps it is all the more important that our draft resolution once again clearly and unambiguously reiterates our support for Georgia's territorial integrity. Her territorial integrity formed also the basis of a joint paper which the UN, the OSCE and the RF submitted to the parties as a basis for further discussions - which, alas, again went nowhere.

The SG has made many efforts personally but even these have not been fruitful. We urge him, however, not to be discouraged and to continue trying again and again to get high-level talks on Abkhazia off the ground. We do, however, agree with him that "a general preoccupation with events taking place elsewhere in the Caucasus region" hinders his efforts, and indeed that the crisis in Chechnya may impede the politics of seeking an Abkhaz settlement. This is just another reason why we hope the Chechnya crisis will be resolved soon, albeit not at any price. Heaven knows the Caucasus region is already plagued by a goodly number of conflicts - and history shows that they influence one another. Would therefore that the impact of the conflict in Chechnya were indeed limited only to politics, only of Abkhazia!

If there is anything positive in this altogether gloomy situation, it is the work of UNOMIG. UNOMIG has reached its full authorized strength. It has correspondingly expanded its activity. It is cooperating well with CIS peace-keeping forces. Its freedom of movement is being observed. Even its status in Georgia has been successfully settled. All this is very welcome news.

And we are also happy to learn that an arrangement has been reached on the cooperation of the UN and the CIS, on basis of the SG's proposals of last November 4.

This cooperation will, we hope, lead to an improvement of the security situation on the ground. It seems to be especially poor in the Gali region - which the SG's report touches on in several paragraphs. We certainly hope that the combined activities of the CIS peace-keepers and of UNOMIG will help calm it.

If there is one more thing we would like, it is richer reporting on the operations of the CIS. We are grateful to the RF delegation for the briefings they occasionally provide to Council members during informal consultations, and indeed I have used today some numbers precisely from these briefings; but we believe it would be very advantageous for their content to find its way into official documents of the SC, for the benefit both of greater transparency of the CIS peace-keeping operations and of fuller information of UN members. No new ground would be broken: The US delegation, for example, regularly provides comparable briefings on Haiti which, as we all know, are publicly available as part of the official record.

Extending the UNOMIG mandate till May 15 will in effect synchronize the timetables of the UN and of the CIS operations, which we have advocated in the past. We therefore fully support this extension and the draft resolution.