Low fuel stocks force UNMEE to prepare for relocation
New York, 5 February: Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today that the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) would be forced to relocate from Eritrea this week if fuel restriction imposed by the Asmara Government were not lifted.
"The Secretary-General is deeply concerned about the critical crisis facing the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) as a result of the stoppage of diesel fuel supplies to the Mission by the Government of Eritrea since 1 December 2007," a spokesperson for Mr. Ban said in a statement.
The spokesman added that if fuel supplies are not reinstated by 6 February 2008, Mr. Ban would instruct UNMEE to begin relocating the Mission's personnel and equipment from Eritrea, on a temporary basis.
"The Secretary-General emphasizes that the temporary relocation of the Mission's personnel is a contingency measure forced by the restrictions imposed on UNMEE by the Eritrean authorities, which are endangering the safety and security of the Mission's personnel," the spokesperson said, adding that this is without prejudice to the 2000 agreement ending hostilities between Ethiopia and Eritrea.