United Nations: The UN Security Council (UNSC) has renewed the mandate of the UN peacekeeping mission in the Abyei border region between Sudan and South Sudan.
In an unanimously adopted resolution, the 15-member Council decided to extend the mandate of the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) for an additional four-and-a-half months, until Feb 28, 2015, Xinhua reported.
It called on Sudan and South Sudan to take steps to reconvene the Abyei Joint Oversight Committee (AJOC), which had provided some administration of the region but has been dormant for over a year.
The resolution reiterated ongoing concerns about the lack of progress made by the parties in addressing issues of mutual concern and in fulfilling their obligations under their June 20, 2011 agreement. It once again demanded that the parties begin establishing an Abyei Area Administration, a Legislative Council, and an Abyei Police Service.
The Council also condemned the continued presence of Sudanese police and South Sudan troops in Abyei, and reiterated that the Abyei "shall be demilitarised from any forces, as well as armed elements of the local communities, other than UNISFA and the Abyei Police Service".
The resolution noted that the decision of Sudan to include Abyei, a disputed territory, in its upcoming national elections "can pose a serious risk of instability" in the region.