The U.N. Security Council renewed a ban on rough diamonds leaving Cote d'Ivoire for another year, which extends through April 30, 2013. The measure was largely expected, but the Security Council did adjust the arms embargo in light of the need for weapons and ammunition in order to train and equip the country’s security forces.
In a unanimously adopted resolution, the Security Council decided that the measures on arms and related materials, first imposed in 2004, “shall no longer apply to the provision of training, advice and expertise related to security and military activities, as well as to the supplies of civilian vehicles to the Ivorian security forces.”
The Security Council also extended the mandate of the Group of Experts it set up to monitor the arms embargo and diamond smuggling, and reiterated the need for authorities in Cote d'Ivoire to provide unhindered access so the experts can carry out their work.
The U.N. first imposed the diamond and arms embargo in 2004 after a civil war split the country into a rebel-held north and a government-controlled south in 2002. In the past year, it also imposed targeted financial and travel measures against the country's former president, Laurent Gbagbo and his associates, after his refusal to leave office following his election defeat to President Alassane Ouattara.