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UN Completes Mission in Angola - 2003-02-13

The United Nations is completing its mission in Angola aimed at arranging humanitarian help and promoting human rights. U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan sees the decision to end the mandate as a sign of progress. In his most recent report on Angola, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan said the country is "firmly placed on a path of political, social and economic recovery."

After holding consultations on the issue, Germany's Ambassador Gunter Plueger, whose country holds the rotating U.N. Security Council presidency, told reporters the Council welcomes the implementation of a nearly decade old peace accord for Angola and the end of the United Nation's mandate. "Members of the Council welcome the report of the Secretary General on the completion of the U.N. mission in Angola, UNMA, which will end on the 15th of February."

Mr. Annan says Angola still needs assistance in areas of human rights, removing land mines, the reintegration of ex-combatants, humanitarian assistance and economic recovery. He says Angola also should hold general elections soon.

Angola is rich in both petroleum and diamonds, but it had been mired in a civil war for over thirty years. The warring sides signed a ceasefire six weeks after the February 22, 2002, death of rebel leader Jonas Savimbi.