Wien, 25 March 2005 Press release

Plassnik welcomes resolution on "urgently necessary peacekeeping mission in Sudan"


UN Security Council unanimously adopted relevant resolution

Vienna, 25 March 2005 - "I very much welcome last night's unanimous resolution by the United Nations Security Council on the establishment of a new peacekeeping operation in Sudan", declared Minister for Foreign Affairs Ursula Plassnik today on the margin of her working visit to Bhutan.

The principal mandate of the UNMIS operation is to support the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the Sudanese Government and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army, working in close cooperation with the African Union Mission in Darfur. Up to five personnel from the Austrian Federal Army will participate in the peacekeeping mission.

"After the protracted negotiations, the resolution on this urgently necessary peacekeeping mission represents an important first step", said the Foreign Minister, adding that the Security Council's request to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to report within 30 days on further options for reinforcing the peace efforts in Darfur could make a decisive contribution towards improving the human rights situation in Sudan.

The UN Mission will be established for an initial period of six months and will consist of approx. 10,000 personnel.