The UN Security Council will hold a special session on Thursday to vote on a British draft resolution to extend the mandate of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL).
The Irish mission to the United Nations, which holds the rotating presidency of the work of the Security Council, said that the meeting will be held at ten in the morning local time in New York City.
Council members were forced on Wednesday to postpone the vote on the British draft resolution to Thursday, after the Russian delegation objected at the last minute to some of the paragraphs contained in the draft regarding the missions of the UN mission.
“One of the council members (you mean Russia) still has concerns and we will try to find a solution to them,” Britain’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Barbara Woodward, told reporters at the UN headquarters in New York.
The British ambassador did not explain the nature of the Russian concerns, but diplomatic sources at the United Nations explained that Russia is seeking to introduce amendments to the draft resolution related to foreign forces and mercenaries present in Libya.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged council members to extend the mission’s mandate before its current mandate expires on Thursday.
“We are aware of the delay in the Security Council’s vote on Unsmil’s mandate and the adoption of a resolution in this regard,” Stephane Dujarric, the official spokesman for the Secretary-General, told reporters at a press conference at the UN headquarters.
In mid-September, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution to extend the mandate of “Unsmil” for 15 days until the end of the same month, in an effort to reach an agreement on changes that Russia seeks to make to its mandate.
“We very much hope that member states can come together and speak with one voice to renew UNSMIL’s mandate, especially as we have expressed our concerns and concerns about the lack of unity among Libyan leaders regarding the conduct of the elections scheduled for December 24,” Dujarric added.
And the Libyan House of Representatives announced, last week, the approval of the withdrawal of confidence from the unity government headed by Abdel Hamid al-Dabaiba, in a move that the Supreme Council of State considered “false” for violating its procedures of the constitutional declaration and the political agreement.
While the UN mission in Libya said that the Dabaiba government remains with it legitimacy, until its replacement through a regular process following the elections.
And recently, tensions have returned between the institutions of governance in Libya, as a result of differences between the House of Representatives on the one hand and the Supreme Council of State, the unity government and the Presidential Council on the other hand, especially over the powers and electoral bills.