UNAMID’s mandate ends in Sudan

United Nations equipment in South Sudan United Nations equipment in South Sudan Photo by Chetan Sharma on Unsplash

30 December 2020

This article presents the UN’s decision to end UNAMID’s mandate, the expected outcomes, and the reactions of domestic international actors

On 22nd of December, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2559, which is to bring to an end to the mandate of the United Nation - African Union Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), the biggest peacekeeping mission in the history of the UN, on 31 December 2020. According to the UN, this decision was made following the observation of marked improvements to the overall situation in Sudan and the Darfur region in particular, as well as progress made by the transitional Government of Sudan in resolving the conflict in Darfur.

This latest decision by the Security Council means that the last activities of the mission will take place on 31 December 2020: as of 1 January 2021, UNAMID personnel will focus on the secure drawdown of the mission. This  process, which is to take 6 months at most, will involve repatriating troops and materiel, as well as the separation of international and national staff. Further steps will include  the closure, and subsequent handover, of the Mission’s physical infrastructure to designated entities in compliance with UN regulations. As such, all uniformed and civilian personnel are to be withdrawn by 30 June 2021 with the exception  of a liquidation team, which will address any unresolved issue and complete the administrative closure of the mission. Following this, the Government of Sudan will assume the primary role on addressing issues such as the peace process, the protection of civilians, the delivery of humanitarian assistance, and the mediation of intercommunal conflicts.

Even though the UN pledges to continue to support the Government of Sudan in regards to political and economic challenges through the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) protests took place in December throughout Darfur in opposition of UNAMID’s withdrawal. Concerns have also been expressed by international organisations like Amnesty International, who says it fears the withdrawal’s possible effects upon the security and protection of civilians in the region.


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Author: Charoula Papastefanaki; Editor: Maxime Grenier

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