DCSIMG

Remarks by Ambassador Rice in an Explanation of Vote on Resolution 1997

U.S. Mission to the United Nations, New York, NY



The United States deeply regrets the necessity to vote on this resolution to end the UNMIS mandate. We call on the Government of Sudan yet again to reconsider its demand that UNMIS cease its activities in the Republic of Sudan effective July 9. The mission has a critical role to continue to play in regional stability, especially in the Two Areas.

The United States is sending a clear message along with other Council members that it wants the United Nations to remain in the Two Areas, especially at this critical juncture. With this resolution, the Council has made clear that it is ready to authorize continued UN operations in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile to support new security arrangements, and we will continue over the coming weeks to urge the Government of Sudan to accept this. It is in their interest to do so. We hope others in the international community will continue to encourage Khartoum to accept this.

It is critical that the Government of Sudan cooperate fully with UNMIS as it begins the process of withdrawing.

We continue to be deeply concerned about the fighting in Southern Kordofan, the displacement of civilians, and the ensuing humanitarian crisis. The Government of Sudan and SPLM-North must return to the negotiating table in the coming days and agree to an immediate cessation of hostilities. We call on the Government of Sudan as well to work actively on agreements to bring peace and stability to the border, and in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan states. Thank you Mr. President.

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