The UN Security Council Thursday issued a statement condemning in the strongest terms the attack that targeted a convoy of MINUSMA (UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali), in the axis between Boni and Douentza.
Underlining that “attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law,” the Council members paid tribute to the peacekeepers who risk their lives and called on the Government to “swiftly investigate the attack and bring the perpetrators to justice.”
They stressed that involvement in planning, directing, sponsoring or conducting attacks against MINUSMA peacekeepers constitute a basis for sanctions designations pursuant to Security Council resolutions.
They also stressed that those responsible for the killings should be held accountable, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to “cooperate actively with all relevant authorities” in this regard.
The Council members expressed their concern about Mali’s security situation and the transnational dimension of the terrorist threat in the Sahel region, urging the Malian parties to implement the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation without further delay.
The full implementation of the agreement and the intensification of efforts to overcome asymmetric threats can contribute to improving the security situation across the country, they noted.
Finally, the Council further spotlighted the importance that MINUSMA have the necessary capacities, including combat convoy companies, to fulfil its mandate and promote the safety and security of the UN peacekeepers.
The UN Secretary-General also condemned the attack, stressing that attacks targeting UN peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law and that the perpetrators must be apprehended and prosecuted.
The Secretary-General pointed out that this incident came one day after six members of the Malian armed forces died from another improvised explosive device attack in central Mali.
“These cowardly acts will not deter MINUSMA’s determination to support the Malian authorities in their efforts to protect civilians and accompany the Malian people in their quest for peace and stability,” a statement by UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.