The UN Security Council on Friday extended for just six months the United Nations political mission in Sudan, after UN envoy Volker Perthes was accused by Sudan's army chief of stoking the worsening civil conflict.
In a short resolution, the Council unanimously agreed to extend until December 3, 2023 the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan, a limited duration that underscores the delicate situation in the country.
Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan last week accused Perthes of stoking the brutal conflict the army is fighting against paramilitaries.
In a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, the army chief also asked him to name a replacement for Perthes, saying the envoy had committed "fraud and disinformation" in facilitating a political process which broke down into six weeks of devastating urban warfare.
At the end of a closed Security Council meeting on Wednesday, Guterres repeated his "full confidence" in Perthes.
"It is up to the Security Council to decide whether the Security Council supports the continuation of the Mission for another period, or whether the Security Council decides that it is time to end it," Guterres said.
The resolution adopted Friday calls on the Secretary-General to continue to report on the mission, known as Unitams, in Sudan every three months. The next report is expected by August 30.
Perthes, who was in New York when Barhan made his accusation, is expected to return "to the region" in the coming days, first stopping in Addis Ababa to meet with African Union officials, Farhan Haq, a spokesman for Guterres, said.
Unitams, created in June 2020 to support Sudan's democratic transition after the fall of Omar al-Bashir a year earlier, had since been renewed annually for a year.