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UN peace funds vote scrapped again over US veto threat

Thursday December 20 2018
CAR peacekeepers

This file photo taken on December 13, 2015 in Bangui, shows a Senegalese soldier from the MINUSCA, the United Nations mission in Central African Republic, running for cover as heavy gunfire is directed towards the Baya Dombia school where voters were gathered for the Constitutional Referendum. PHOTO | MARCO LONGARI | AFP

By AFP

UNITED NATIONS,

African UN Security Council members scrapped Wednesday, for the second time in 10 days, voting on a draft resolution pushing for UN funds to support peace operations on the continent -- under threat from an American veto.

Presented by Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea and Ivory Coast, the draft resolution sets out "in principle" that UN funds can be provided on a case-by-case basis "to support African Union-led peace support operations authorized by the Security Council."

It also puts forward that the UN could provide up to 75 per cent of funding, with the African Union covering the remaining 25 per cent.

The text has faced bumps in the road since the beginning of this month.

'US VETO'

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Optimistic about its adoption, Ivory Coast, which holds the Security Council's rotating presidency, on December 10 called a meeting for a vote.

But hours later, under pressure from European countries, it was cancelled — threatened by a possible US veto.

For weeks, the US has said it is not opposed to the project itself, but rather its timing.

Diplomats say the US cannot commit to funding without the approval of the new lower chamber of Congress, which begins in January.

On Wednesday, the three African Security Council members raised the issue again, but rejected a US-proposed compromise.

"We're giving ourselves another 36 hours," an anonymous African diplomat told AFP, adding, "Things are on the right track."

Another diplomat confirmed the vote had been postponed to Friday.

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