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I should be grateful if you would have this letter and its annex distributed as a document of the Security Council.
July was a busy month. A total of 33 meetings were held during the month: 12 public meetings, 5 open briefings, 12 sessions of informal consultations and 4 private meetings.
During July, the Security Council adopted seven resolutions: resolution 1490 (2003) on UNIKOM, 1491 (2003) on SFOR, 1492 (2003) on UNAMSIL, 1493 (2003) on MONUC, 1494 (2003) on UNOMIG, 1495 (2003) on MINURSO and 1496 (2003) on UNIFIL. All of them were adopted unanimously.
The Council also adopted three presidential statements, on Ethiopia/Eritrea, Côte d’Ivoire and the follow-up to the reports of the missions of the Security Council to Central and West Africa.
Moreover the Council issued five statements to the press, on the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burundi, the Central African Republic, Somalia and Liberia.
The Security Council continued to consider the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question. On 17 July, the Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Terje Roed-Larsen, briefed the Council about the situation in the region, prospects for the peace process and the implementation of the performance-based road map to a permanent two-State solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict presented by the Quartet; he expressed some optimism after the latest developments in the region. Most delegations echoed this optimism during the ensuing consultations.
On 31 July, the Security Council adopted, after an amendment was introduced to operative paragraph 4, resolution 1496 (2003), extending the mandate of UNIFIL for a new period of six months in response to the report of the Secretary-General. The Council reiterated the need for self-restraint on the part of the parties in conflict in order to avoid an escalation of tension.