Security Council renews arms embargo on Somalia, authorisation to inspect vessels

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NEW YORK, Nov 16 — To enforce an arms embargo on Somalia, the United Nations Security Council on Monday decided to reauthorise a maritime interdiction of illicit weapons imports and charcoal exports, while renewing the mandate of the Panel of Experts on Somalia, reported Xinhua.

Adopting Resolution 2607 by a vote of 13 in favour, none against, with two abstentions, the 15-member Council, acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, renewed and expanded the provisions set out in paragraph 15 of Resolution 2182 until Nov. 15, 2022.

In doing so, it authorises member states to inspect vessels in Somali territorial waters and on the high seas extending to and including the Arabian Sea and Persian Gulf they believe under “reasonable grounds” are carrying charcoal or weapons or military equipment, including components for improvised explosive devices.

However, the resolution also notes that the arms embargo does not apply to weapons, military equipment, technical advice, financial and other assistance and training related to military activities intended solely for the development of the Somali National Security Forces.

The exemption is also extended to, among others, United Nations and African Union missions in Somalia as well as states or international, regional and subregional organisations undertaking measures to suppress acts of piracy and armed robbery off the coast of Somalia.

As for the mandate of the Panel of Experts on Somalia, which was renewed until Dec. 15, 2022, the council requested the experts to include gender as a cross-cutting issue in its investigations and reporting.

The council also requested the secretary-general provide an update no later than July 31, 2022, on any further developments towards the normalisation of relations between Eritrea and Djibouti.


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