Remarks at a UN Security Council Briefing on the Situation in Guinea-Bissau

Rodney Hunter
Political Coordinator
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
August 30, 2018


Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you also to all the briefers who briefed us today. Thank you for your remarks.

We welcome Prime Minister Gomes and express our appreciation for the ongoing efforts to foster unity in the government and prepare for critical elections in November.

The United States is pleased to note the welcome political progress in Guinea-Bissau since April of this year. We commend political leaders for taking the much needed, and long delayed, steps to break through a nearly three-year long stalemate to get the government moving again for the well-being of the people of Guinea-Bissau. We encourage them to continue to implement the Conakry Agreement and pursue critical reforms.

Next on Guinea-Bissau’s political horizon, we look forward to successful voter registration and free, fair, and transparent legislative elections in November. We encourage Guinea-Bissau’s partners in the region and the international community to support the government’s efforts to prepare for and execute these elections. And we also commend ECOWAS’ generous contributions toward this effort and express our gratitude for its continued leadership as a mediator.

Even with this welcome progress and upcoming elections, the Security Council must remain vigilant as the consensus agreements that helped thaw the political crisis remain fragile.

The United States shares the Secretary-General’s concerns about the continued threat that drug trafficking and transnational organized crime pose to Guinea-Bissau and the broader sub-region.

We welcome UNIOGBIS and UNODC’s support of the government’s reactivation of the transnational crime unit and encourage UNODC to continue to build its capacity in the country.

We also salute the efforts of civil society and concerned citizens to encourage transparency in governance and a culture of respect for human rights in the country. We are encouraged by the ongoing, expanding efforts of the Bissau-Guinean Women’s Council, in particular their drive for inclusion in the development of the stability pact called for in the Conakry Agreement.

Only a few months remain before critical elections that could solidify the political progress made so far this year. Steps taken to fix the wrongs of so many wasted months of gridlock were bold and important, but the road to enduring success is long.

We will continue to work with the government as it emerges from this frustrating stall and strives to achieve security and opportunity for all citizens of the country.

Thank you.