United Nations, Dec 09 (UiTV/IANS) – The UN Security Council has welcomed the signing of a framework deal in Sudan to end political stalemate, and called on key political forces in the country to join the political process.
Sudan’s military and civilian leaders on Monday signed a political framework agreement to end the political impasse and institute a two-year transitional civilian authority.
In a press statement issued on Thursday, the 15-member Security Council welcomed the signing of the deal, calling it “an essential step” towards the forming of a civilian-led government and defining constitutional arrangements to guide Sudan through a transitional period culminating in elections, Xinhua news agency reported.
The council members “stressed the importance of establishing a conducive environment for resolving outstanding issues through a peaceful and inclusive dialogue,” the statement said.
They also underscored the need for continued confidence-building measures and strongly encouraged key political forces that have not yet signed the agreement to join the political process, and emphasised the importance of providing them with further opportunities to do so, it added.
The council members encouraged the parties to start work without delay on the second phase of the process, including to address critical issues envisaged by the signatories to the framework agreement that foster peace and security in Sudan, said the statement.
They emphasised that a concerted effort to finalise negotiations and reach agreement on the formation of a civilian-led transitional government “was essential to address Sudan’s urgent humanitarian and economic challenges,” the statement added.
Convention on the Law of the Sea more relevant than ever: UN chief
As the ocean is “in dire straits,” the landmark UN Convention on the Law of the Sea adopted 40 years ago is more relevant than ever, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said.
He made the remarks on Thursday while addressing a UN General Assembly meeting commemorating the 40th anniversary of the adoption and opening for signature of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
Adopted in 1982, the convention opened a new chapter of global maritime governance, and has greatly helped humanity better understand, protect and utilise the sea, Xinhua news agency reported.
Four decades ago, the world took a vital step to bring governance and order to oceans and seas, Guterres said, adding that the convention’s near-universal acceptance reflects its “fundamental importance” and its legal framework and related instruments to countries around the world.
“As we gather today, the convention is more relevant than ever. The ocean is in dire straits,” the UN chief warned.
Nearly 35 per cent of the world’s fisheries are overexploited, he said, also citing the rising of sea levels, acidifying of the ocean, bleaching and dying of coral reefs, as well as “epic floods” threatening coastal cities and small island developing states.
Greater ambition is needed for the ocean and the people counting on it, and the convention’s 40th anniversary should be “an important reminder to continue using this critical instrument to tackle today’s challenges,” Guterres added.