United Nations seeks to endorse military action against Boko Haram

imageChad has circu­lated a draft resolution to the United Nations Security Council that would endorse military action by a five-nation African force against Ni­geria’s Islamic extremist group Boko Haram.

Chad’s U.N. Ambassa­dor Mahamat Zene Cherif said yesterday he hopes for a council vote this month on the proposed resolution, which would endorse the decision of Chad, Camer­oon, Niger, Nigeria and Be­nin to establish a force for a period of 12 months to take “all necessary measures” against Boko Haram.

The draft resolution ex­presses “deep concern” that Boko Haram recently pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group. It de­clares that terrorist acts by Boko Haram and others constitute “one of the most serious threats to interna­tional peace and security.”

The proposed resolution asks U.N. Secretary-Gen­eral Ban Ki-moon to es­tablish a trust fund to help finance the military opera­tion. It says the fund should be managed by the five countries under the supervi­sion of the African Union.

The draft also calls on the international community to provide equipment and intelligence to the African force, which is headquar­tered in the Chadian capi­tal Ndjamena, and to assist with the deployment of troops in required.

It was drafted under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Char­ter, which can be military enforced.

Council diplomats said there are differences among members on whether the draft should be under Chap­ter 7 since it is not asking the U.N. to authorize the force, just to endorse it. There are also differences over who should manage the trust fund, the diplomats said, speaking on condi­tion of anonymity because consultations have been private. Boko Haram is al­ready subject to U.N. sanc­tions.

The draft resolution ex­presses the council’s readi­ness to consider imposing sanctions on additional in­dividuals, groups and enti­ties that are financing, arm­ing, planning, recruiting or using the Internet and social media to support the extremist group.

It “demands that Boko Haram immediately and unequivocally cease all hostilities and all abuses of human rights and vio­lations of international humanitarian law and disarm.” It also demands the release of all those abducted including the more than 200 school­girls seized nearly a year ago in northeastern Ni­geria.

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