Evolving peacekeeping landscape requires stronger global-regional partnership

Since the United Nations increasingly shares responsibility for peace and security with regional organizations, everything possible should be bone to help them resolve regional problems.

Also to include the States concerned in solutions, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said.

“At the same time, regional organizations should continue contributing to United Nations peace and security efforts. We count on them for political leverage as well as civilian and military capacities,” Ban told the Security Council, during an open debate on the subject of regional organizations and contemporary global security challenges.

Noting that cooperation with regional and sub-regional organizations have gained “greater influence” in recent years, partly because of the changing nature of conflicts, Ban explained that a number of aggravating factors prompted him to request a fresh review of UN peace operations.

“Urbanization, unemployment and population movements, including massive displacement, are increasing dramatically. Technological advances in warfare, including cyber threats, pose grave dangers to civilians. And against this shifting security landscape, the United Nations is deploying into fragile and remote environments with little peace to keep.”

The Secretary-General said that he is now analyzing the report of the High-level Independent Panel on Peace Operations to identify the recommendations the Organization can carry out “immediately” – and those that will require action by legislative bodies, Member States and partners.

One of these recommendations is a “stronger global-regional partnership” to ensure that the Security Council can draw on a “more resilient and capable network of actors,” he underlined.

“In recent years, we have seen how practical cooperation among the United Nations, the African Union and the European Union has enhanced progress in Africa. Now we need to build on this trilateral cooperation and boost our collective ability to manage, plan and execute peace operations,” Ban reminded.

Different forms of engagement with other organizations proved equally successful, he said, including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the

League of Arab States (LSA), North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

“The Panel recommends that we deepen the strategic UN-AU partnership. I fully agree. Almost two thirds of our peace operations and nearly 90 per cent of our uniformed peacekeepers are deployed in Africa,” insisted the Secretary-General.

The report also calls for greater support to Security Council-authorized African Union peace operations, the experts recommending that the UN enable regional organizations to share the burden in accordance with the UN Charter.

“Toward that end, I draw attention to the Panel’s call for more predictable financing, including through the use of UN-assessed contributions,” Ban observed, while emphasizing other important forms of support, like planning processes, logistical packages, UN-managed trust funds and access to all UN expertise, systems, materiel and services.

“The UN’s broad support for the AU and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) also includes political cooperation – which is difficult to quantify but still highly valuable.”

Joint efforts have made a meaningful difference, he continued, in defusing tensions and supporting the transition in Burkina Faso, encouraging political dialogue ahead of elections in Guinea, resolving the electoral crisis in Kenya and ending a political deadlock in Madagascar through a Southern African Development Community (SADC) Roadmap, among other engagements.

“We have succeeded in dramatically enhancing our partnerships. We have come to rely on each other in critical times. We will continue to advance progress,” assured the UN chief.