Opening remarks by Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, President of the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly General Assembly at Plenary Debate: Strengthening of the United Nations system: Report of the Secretary-General (A/70/357)
12 October 2015
Mr. Secretary-General, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, good morning.
Peace operations are at the heart of UN’s global engagement. They are among the major innovations since the UN’s inception which have enabled this Organisation to better fulfil its mandate and have contributed greatly to peace and security in our world.
But peace operations, like any tool, are in constant need of refinement. Evolving challenges and threats to international peace and security make it necessary for the UN to strengthen its role, capacity and efficiency and more particularly the effectiveness of field operations.
Today’s debate is both necessary and timely. The dramatic global refugee crisis and the other humanitarian as well as security dimensions of ongoing crises, demonstrate just how complex today’s conflicts have become.
In light of these new realities, we must review our practices and instruments, how we approach policy and operational questions, and how we address budgetary and management issues.
I therefore commend the Secretary-General for having taken the initiative to launch this review. The high-level independent panel on peace operations consulted widely and their work resulted in a number of concrete recommendations. Subsequently, member states have received the Secretary General’s implementation report.
Having examined these important contributions, it is now up to the membership to consider how this key initiative can be transformed into concrete steps that ensure the UN’s peace operations can adequately respond to our changing world. This is a unique opportunity and at the end of today’s debate, I will return to the question of how best to offer procedural clarity on next steps.
It is, of course, also worth bearing in mind that this review of UN peace operations is complemented by the 10-year review of the peacebuilding architecture and a global study on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security.
Ensuring synergy and coherence between these three reviews will promote a holistic reflection on matters that are clearly interconnected. Facts on the ground, including threats to global security such as epidemics, violent extremism, proliferation etc, are powerful evidence that a comprehensive and more integrated approach to peace and security is urgently needed.
On 10 and 11 May 2016, I will convene a high-level thematic debate in order to advance synergies between these three reviews. Your participation and that of all stakeholders in the preparations of this debate, in the event itself and its possible follow up, will be crucial.
Ladies and gentlemen, a UN that is truly equipped to translate the objectives of the Charter into a concrete reality is in our common interest. And it is our shared responsibility to make this happen.
Concluding remarks by Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, President of the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly at Plenary Debate: Strengthening of the United Nations system: Report of the Secretary-General (A/70/357)
Mr. Secretary-General, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you all for your contributions and for the candid and positive spirit in which you engaged in this debate.
The work of the high-level independent panel on peace operations and the subsequent report from the Secretary General were welcomed by many as useful contributions to our discussions on how best to ensure that the UN’s Peace Operations are as effective as possible.
In light of today’s debate, I intend to explore with Member States advancing a procedural resolution that should recall in particular that relevant bodies will assess the recommendations in accordance with established procedures.
I am looking forward to the further active consideration of the General Assembly on these proposals.