Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative Anna Evstigneeva at UNSC briefing on the situation in the Central African region


We thank Special Representative of the Secretary-General, A. Abarry and President of the Economic Community of Central African States, G. Verissimo, for the briefings.

The countries of Central Africa continue to face complex challenges in the areas of peace and security, as well as state-building and economic development.

Recently, we have seen that our Western colleagues have been dutifully removing from UNSC documents references to the events in Libya in 2011, when their hasty use of force led to the destabilization of a number of African regions. Of course, the one to deal with the main consequences is Western Africa, but Central Africa has been affected too. Unfortunately, hotbeds of instability spread beyond the Sahara-Sahel region. We see the concern of the coastal countries of the Gulf of Guinea. The strengthening of “Islamic State – West Africa Province” has a negative impact on the security situation in the Lake Chad Basin.

We are concerned about the persisting destructive potential of Boko Haram. The actions of that group still have a significant impact on the situation in a number of regions of Cameroon and Chad and pose a threat to north-eastern Nigeria.

We attach particular importance to regional efforts in countering terrorism. We note the effectiveness of the joint work of African countries within the Regional Multinational Joint Task Force. We stand for providing them with predictable funding and assistance from the international community.

We are concerned about the continuation of violence in north-western and south-western Cameroon and advocate the search for a political formula to resolve the contradictions in the regions affected by the armed conflict.

We are gratified to see the progressive stabilization of the situation in the Central African Republic. With the support of bilateral partners, including Russia, as well as MINUSCA, Bangui has managed to overcome the most difficult phase of the fight against bandit groups. We call on the countries of the region to study the CAR's experience in normalization, which Bangui is ready to share. We will continue to provide comprehensive support to our Central African friends in establishing peace and security in the country.

We note positive developments in the official dialogue between the CAR and Chad on border cooperation. We are convinced that this will help to enhance joint efforts to eliminate security threats in the area adjacent to the state border of the two countries.

We congratulate the government and the people of Chad on the successful holding of presidential elections and the completion of the transition period. This is an important stage in ensuring stability and national accord.

We note the focus of Gabon's transitional authorities on returning to constitutional rule within an agreed time frame. We welcome the decision of ECCAS to restore Gabon's membership in that subregional organization.

We are seriously concerned about the difficult humanitarian situation in the region. First and foremost, the developments in Sudan and large-scale implications of that conflict for neighboring states. Statistics on refugees, IDPs and those in need of some form of humanitarian assistance show that increasing support for the countries of Central African region is necessary. We join the call of the Secretary-General of the United Nations.

We unwaveringly support the activities of the UN Office for Central Africa and its head, SRSG Abarry, aimed at strengthening peace and security in the region. We note UNOCA’s mediation efforts made in direct contact with the parties in problem areas and in coordination with regional mechanisms and associations. We consider UNOCA to be an important instrument of international preventive diplomacy.

At the same time, we are convinced that states of the region have the primary role to play in crisis prevention and conflict resolution. Assistance from the international community should base on principles of non-interference in internal affairs and respect for national sovereignty. There is no place for outdated and discredited colonial practices and their modern manifestations.

We do not support the linkage between climate change and issues of peace and security, which is actively promoted by a number of special political missions. Substituting political efforts with these secondary tasks is not appropriate. Measures to adapt to and overcome the consequences of climate change should be dealt with by United Nations funds and programs. By all means, solutions to emerging problems are to be sought in the area of promoting economic development. Chasing donor funds will not yield practical results.

In conclusion, we should like to say that Russia will continue to support the United Nations organizations working in the region (including UNOCA) and to provide its countries with the necessary assistance on a bilateral basis.

Thank you.

Video of the statement