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25 September 2002

25 September 2002

Following is last night’s press statement on Liberia by Stefan Tafrov (Bulgaria), President of the Security Council:

Members of the Council received a briefing by Tuliameni Kalomoh, Assistant Secretary-General of the Department of Political Affairs, who updated them on the recent situation in Liberia.

Members of the Council urged the three Presidents of the Mano River Union countries to continue meeting under the Rabat Process which had been initiated through the excellent efforts of His Majesty King Mohamed VI of Morocco in February this year, so as to further their discussions on the consolidation of peace for the subregion.

Members of the Council noted the National Peace and Reconciliation Conference held in Liberia between August and September this year and urged the Liberian parties to cease all fighting immediately and resort to dialogue for the peaceful settlement of the conflict.  Members also called on the parties to work with the international community to promote the conditions for a free, transparent and inclusive election in 2003.

Members of the Council take note of the decision of the Government of Liberia to lift the state of emergency and call on it to take additional measures to create a conducive environment for inclusive internal dialogue.

Members of the Council reiterated that Liberia must fully respect the resolutions of the Council and noted that the Council will be conducting a review of the measures imposed under resolution 1343, as extended by resolution 1408 in November 2002.

Members of the Council welcomed the appointment of the new Special Representative of the Secretary-General for West Africa, Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, and the new head of the United Nations Peace-building Support Office in Liberia (UNOL), Abou Moussa.  Members expressed support for their efforts to work with all parties concerned, including the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union (AU) in promoting national reconciliation in Liberia as well as in the subregion.

Members of the Council also welcomed the convening of the recent inaugural meeting of the International Contact Group.  Members expressed support for the efforts of this group to establish a cohesive political strategy and sustainable engagement for the resolution of conflicts in Liberia and strengthening peace in the Mano River Union.

Members of the Council may also call on Liberia to take additional steps to facilitate secure access to refugees and displaced persons by humanitarian workers.

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