posted on Mon 16 May 2011 2:19 PM
DPA Briefing on Emerging Issues

Tomorrow afternoon B. Lynn Pascoe, head of the Department of Political Affairs (DPA), will brief the Council for the second time this month on a number of issues. It seems that tomorrow’s briefing is likely to include Yemen, Libya, Syria, the situation on the Thai-Cambodian border, the Council mission to Africa and Ethiopia and Eritrea. Late last week Council members had asked for a briefing on Yemen. However, it appears that developments of concern have led to adding these other issues.

Jamal bin Omer, the UN envoy to Yemen, who was in Yemen last week, is expected to brief members on his visit. Council members are likely to want to hear about bin Omer’s meeting with the Yemeni president and leaders of the opposition. On Syria, Council members are expecting an update on the latest developments.

There also appears to be interest in having more information on the Thai-Cambodian border situation including information on the agreed deployment of Indonesian observers and the reasons for a delay in implementation.

It seems that the main focus of the briefing on the Council’s visit to Africa next week will be on their discussions with the AU Peace and Security Council in Addis Ababa.

There are concerns about the situation between Eritrea and Ethiopia. A recent letter by Eritrea to the Council president asking the Council to address with what it calls “Ethiopia’s reckless threat of use of force against Eritrea” is an example of the increased tension. The letter also asks the Council uphold the demarcation decisions of the Eritrea Ethiopia Boundary Commission.

No decisions are expected from tomorrow’s briefing. However, the information given may help provide a better sense of whether there is a need for greater Council involvement on any of these emerging issues.