Topic A: The Situation in the Northern Triangle
The Northern Triangle is composed of three Central American countries: El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. These countries exert substantial regional and global influence, serving as both a conduit for regional shipping as well as a gateway for the narcotics trade. It is consistently recognized as one of the most violent regions in the world, with over 50,000 reported homicides in the past three years alone -- a result of rampant drug trafficking and organized gang violence, with suspicions that the actual toll is much higher. Exacerbating this problem are the region’s fragile democratic institutions, which were entirely transformed by civil war in the 1980s and have never fully recovered. The turmoil of the region also bears implications for the international community. In recent years, it is estimated that over 10% of the region’s 30 million citizens have fled their home countries, seeking asylum in countries such as the United States and Mexico. Inundated with a flood of refugees, both of these countries have begun tightening border controls and deporting refugees back to the region.
There is little disagreement within the international community that the rampant corruption, systemic violence, and problematic refugee crisis that defines the Northern Triangle must be resolved. However, the nuances of the situation provide ample points of contention among the diverse set of countries that represent the Security Council. Specifically, the Security Council must grapple with curbing violence in the Northern Triangle, addressing the growing refugee crisis and assessing the systemic corruption and erosion of democratic institutions in the Northern Triangle states
Topic B: The Situation in the Central African Republic
Since the start of 2015, the Security Council has passed six resolutions focused on the Central African Republic (CAR). In 2012, after claiming that President François Bozizé failed to uphold a peace agreement by not integrating Seleka men into the military, the Muslim Seleka rebels overthrew the government, leading to fighting with the Christian “anti-balaka” forces and the ousting of President Bozizé. Since, there have been over 6,000 casualties, over 350,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs), and 2.7 million people in dire need of humanitarian aid.
In February 2016, the crisis in the CAR reached a major milestone on its path towards political stability when Faustin-Archange Touadera was elected president on a platform of peace and reunification. Despite the peaceful election, in Resolution 2281 passed on 26 April 2016, the Security Council, “Determin[ed] that the situation in the Central African Republic continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security.” In the same resolution, the Security Council has declared its intent to stay actively seized in the matter highlighting the fact that there remains work to do and other solutions to explore. The caution of the Security Council has proven wise. On 20 May 2016, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) halted all operations in the CAR after an aid caravan was robbed and an aid worker killed by unidentified terrorists. MSF is an NGO vital in providing necessary aid and care to the civilians of the CAR and this attack and is just one example of the grave need for additional security. Despite progress made thus far, the Security Council must work to further securitize the region and create long lasting stability within the country.