Angola Peace Monitor, 06/16/'95

Angola Peace Monitor, 06/16/'95

Angola Peace Monitor Issue no.6, 16 June 1995 Published by ACTSA on behalf of the Angola Emergency Campaign

United Nations warns aid is not arriving

The United Nations has warned that the current improvement in the humanitarian situation in Angola is being jeopardised by a poor response to the 1995 UN Consolidated Inter-Agency Appeal, and a shortfall in meeting the needs of the World Food Programme (WFP).

According to figures provided by the Financial Tracking Sub-Unit, Complex Emergency Support Unit, of the UN Department of Humanitarian Affairs, as of 18 May only 3 percent of non-food aid required under the appeal has been pledged or received. Of a total of 77 non-food aid projects presented in the Appeal, only 12 have received any funding.

These figures were confirmed by the UN Secretary-General, Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali in his fourth progress report to the United Nations Security Council on 4 June 1995 (S/1995/458)#. Dr Boutros- Ghali stated that "I regret to inform the Security Council that, in the non-food sectors, the response to the 1995 United Nations humanitarian appeal has yielded only 3 percent of required assistance. Delays in the confirmation of pledges announced at the donors' meeting in February 1995 may put all humanitarian programmes in Angola at risk, with dramatic consequences for the civilian population. I once again urge the international community to support United Nations agencies and NGOs in addressing the critical needs of the Angolan people".

The UN Humanitarian Assistance Co-ordination Unit (UCAH) in its report of 29 May - 4 June noted continued action to improve the humanitarian situation nationwide. However, it signalled a warning that the WFP is not due to receive any further food until August.

It said that "WFP maize and beans requirements for the month of June will be satisfied with the 1,000 metric tons of maize and 20 metric tons of beans loaned by CARE International. The search continues to cover requirements for July since WFP stocks are not due in the country before August 1995. While gradual temporary solutions are being sought to satisfy the food requirements, the response to funding for transport of non-food items remains critical".

The serious consequences of such a shortfall in relation to the peace process was spelt out in the UN Secretary-General's report, which stated that "overall food requirements are still considerable. According to the preliminary findings of a recent Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN (FAO) / WFP crop assessment mission, the 1994/5 harvest is far below normal expectations, the likely consequence being that extensive food aid will still be required throughout 1995. Based on the current pattern of food pledges and deliveries, WFP may face a major disruption in supply as early as July. This could jeopardise delivery to the quartering areas, where the provision of food is a key element."

In his report the Secretary-General also draws attention to the importance of humanitarian aid in sustaining and consolidating peace. In this respect he states that "it is distressing that, of the resources solicited in the 1995 humanitarian appeal for Angola, only 15 percent has been received to date. I appeal to the international community to replenish the humanitarian stocks for Angolans a matter of urgency".

Note: in a reply to a Parliamentary Question by Robert Hughes MP, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Tony Baldry MP, stated that Britain have pledged 5 million pounds sterling in response to the 1995 UN appeal, of which 2.5 million pounds sterling has been disbursed. Aid is supporting UN Agencies and NGOs with assistance for seeds and tools, demining, primary health, relief supplies and logistics.

Joint Commission meet in Luanda

Military incidents, including the death of 10 Angolan Government soldiers, were discussed at the 17th Plenary Session of the Joint Commission in Luanda on 15 June. The Joint Commission reviewed the military situation since the last meeting of the Joint Commission, which took place in Negage on 2 June.

The Joint Commission had flown from Luanda to Uige, from where they travelled by road to Negage. This was seen as a symbol of the hope for improved overland access for humanitarian purposes in Uige province.

In the most serious incident reported since then, 10 Government soldiers were killed and 11 others injured when the vehicle they were travelling in set off a mine. This happened in the eastern province of Moxico.

In a further incident on 8 June, two UNAVEM military observers were shot on the road from Dundo to Lucapa, the capital of Lunda Norte. A Kenyan soldier was seriously injured in the attack. The attack was carried out by "five men in green uniforms" who then set fire to the vehicle of the two observers, a statement from UNAVEM III said.

The Joint Commission also decided to speed up the opening of roads. Demining and humanitarian aid were also discussed.

Secretary-General reports further progress

In his fourth progress report to the United Nations Security Council on 4 June 1995 (S/1995/458)#, the Secretary-General, Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali stated that "the implementation of the Lusaka Protocol has entered a new and promising phase".

The head of the UN reported that during the period under review (since his previous report of 3 May), the cease-fire has generally held, with a decrease in the number of violations and no major incidents. At the same time "both parties continued to register complaints of small-scale attacks, aggressive patrolling, raids and the harassment of civilians, while in some areas, the Government reportedly distributed arms to its civil defence personnel".

In addition, "despite considerable progress, the second phase of disengagement, which covers Lunda Norte, Lunda Sul and Moxico, has not been fully completed".

Demining plan finalised

One of the key issues raised by the United Nations as being a barrier to the deployment of UNAVEM troops is the clearance of mines from relevant areas.

In this context, the Secretary-General stated in his report of 4 June to the Security Council that a plan has been formalised by the UN for mine clearance, and UNAVEM has strongly urged the Angolan Government and UNITA to expedite mine clearance throughout the country.

A major factor inhibiting demining projects is the lack of response to the UN appeal for financial support. Out of an estimated requirement of $12.4 million, only $1.28 million has so far been pledged/donated.

Meanwhile as part of its undertakings under the Lusaka Protocol, the Angolan Government has pledged $3 million for mine clearing activities, including the purchase of necessary equipment, and has offered 800 sappers to undertake the work.

According to a letter from the Angolan ambassador to the United States, H.E Mr Jose Patricio, to a US congressional committee, this is part of the Angolan Government's overall support of $65 million for UNAVEM III in tax exemptions, office facilities, port fees waivers and low cost fuel.

The UN Secretary-General in his report of 4 June called on UN programmes and agencies in Angola, as well as NGOs, to "extend all necessary cooperation to the Mission" in its endeavours. This work is to be supplemented by the Central Mine Action Training School which is to be established by the United Nations.

Engineers to assist troops

The UN Secretary-General in his progress report of 4 June, announced that he is to strengthen the military component of UNAVEM by adding two specialised engineering companies, within the authorised strength of 7,000 military personnel.

Their task will be to give engineering support to ensure that UNAVEM troops are able to move freely.

At present the Angolan Government is undertaking a major bridge and road repair programme (see Angola Peace Monitor no.5).

Civilian police deployed

The Secretary-General of the UN has reported progress in the deployment of civilian police observers as part of the UN's role under the Lusaka Protocol agreed on 20 November 1994, between the Angolan Government and UNITA.

The Lusaka Protocol envisages that the United Nations will verify and monitor the activities of the Angolan National Police, including the verification and monitoring of the quartering of the Rapid Reaction Police.

As of 30 May, 210 civilian police observers from 19 countries were deployed in Angola to carry out this role. They have been deployed at 29 UNAVEM sites, including 6 regional headquarters.

Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali stated on 4 June that they have "received differing degrees of support from the Angolan National Police in various parts of the country. Although this cooperation has been encouraging in most areas, there is still considerable room for improvement in others, as some police authorities claim that they have not received instructions to grant the UN unrestricted access to police facilities or to provide it with all information in accordance with the Lusaka Protocol. There has been little progress so far in quartering the Government's Rapid Reaction Police, which is due mainly to delays in making adequate barracks available".

Revised timetable for the deployment of troops

The timetable for the deployment of infantry units under UNAVEM III has been revised following the visit to Angola by the Assistant Secretary-General for Planning and Support in he Department of Peace- keeping Operations, Lieutenant-General Manfred Eisele.

During his visit from 10 to 15 May, Lt. Gen. Eisele met with the UN Special Representative, Alioune Blondin Beye, representatives of the Angolan Government and UNITA.

Following his recommendations, the revised timetable is as follows. The first infantry troops, 380 Uruguayans, arrived on 31 May, with a further 1,200 troops expected from Brazil shortly.

The second batch of infantry troops is expected to arrive in the first half of July, with a third batch arriving in the second half of July. The further despatch of UN infantry will depend on the progress made by the parties in opening up the major access roads and in mine clearing.

An unforeseen complication arose when Pakistan withdrew their offer to contribute an infantry battalion to UNAVEM.

At present the UN logistic battalion in Lobito/Catumbela and Luanda has become fully operational and has undertaken preparations for the establishment of logistic bases and the deployment of follow-up units. In addition, an engineer squadron, a signals unit, a field hospital and advance parties of several other units have been deployed.

From: "APIC"
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 1995 21:37:43 +0000
Subject: Angola Peace Monitor June 16, 1995