Under-Secretary-General Tells of Aim to Build on 2010 Efforts in Bolstering United Nations Peacekeeping Capabilities

22 February 2011
GA/PK/206

Under-Secretary-General Tells of Aim to Build on 2010 Efforts in Bolstering United Nations Peacekeeping Capabilities

22 February 2011
General Assembly
GA/PK/206
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Special Committee on

 Peacekeeping Operations

217th & 218th Meeting (AM & PM)

Under-Secretary-General Tells of Aim to Build on 2010 Efforts

 

in Bolstering United Nations Peacekeeping Capabilities

 

General Assembly President Joins Peacekeeping,

Field Support Chiefs at Opening of Special Committee’s 2011 Session

The United Nations would aim in the coming year to build on 2010 efforts to bolster the ability of the “blue helmets” to protect civilians, defuse conflict and foster sustainable peace in strife-torn areas through a range of policy-development, operational capacity, field support, planning and oversight-improvement measures, the head of the world body’s peacekeeping operations told the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations as it opened its 2011 substantive session today.

“I hope 2011 will set us on a path towards providing our personnel with the necessary political and operational support structure, resources and guidance to deliver all of their mandated tasks effectively,” saidAlain Le Roy, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations.  He recalled that in 2010, the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and the Department of Field Support had created a comprehensive strategy to fill critical human-resource and material gaps to ensure that military troops and civilian personnel alike were well-trained and well-equipped to deliver on agreed standards for reasonable performance.

He asked the Special Committee to endorse the Peacekeeping Department’s new strategic framework to guide the development of a draft strategy on civilian protection — a particularly challenging area — saying he would present, by the end of March, the new departmental civilian-protection training modules.  Troops, police and civilians on the ground continued to develop innovative approaches, he said, citing the early-warning system created by the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), which had recently enabled peacekeepers to free seven abducted women.

To address the chronic shortage of vital peacekeeping resources, particularly military helicopters and other equipment, he recalled, the Secretariat had begun in December 2009 to distribute lists of gaps in military, police, rule-of-law and other capabilities in order to support Member States in their short- and long-term planning, he said, adding that the Peacekeeping Department had recently launched a pilot programme to develop baseline capability and operational standards among military personnel in infantry battalions and medical support units.

Susana Malcorra, Under-Secretary-General for Field Support, said her Department’s new Global Field Support Strategy aimed to set up missions in a more timely way and to provide them with the requisite physical support to better support peacekeeping, early peacebuilding, electoral processes, mediation and conflict prevention capacities.  To make field operations more efficient and cost-effective, particularly during periods of financial constriction, the Department was asking missions to cut $90 million from current personnel costs in order to fund new human resources conditions passed by the General Assembly, she said.

Joseph Deiss (Switzerland), President of the General Assembly, described the Field Support Department’s recent report on resources as timely and relevant, emphasizing that as peacekeeping operations became increasingly complex, it was crucial to make the best use of existing resources, particularly in the face of the current global financial crisis, and to assure countries providing peacekeepers that there were sufficient resources in the field for their troops to carry out their tasks.

U. Joy Ogwu (Nigeria), Chair of the Special Committee, said there were many new challenges in peacekeeping operations today, including the growing need to address the driving forces of conflict.  Armed groups had shown themselves willing to use sexual violence as a weapon of war, and young people continued to be drawn into conflicts.  The task was daunting, but the commitment of the international community to engage in the struggle against those challenges was strong, she said.  In 2010, the idea of “preparedness” had led to a new programme of work which drew on lessons learned in the field and reviewed several major new advances, including new risk-analysis capabilities and the first report released on the New Horizons initiative.

Among the more than 20 other speakers taking the floor today, Chile’s representative, speaking on behalf of the Rio Group, said developing countries should have a greater say in all stages of peacekeeping since they were the largest contributors of military and police personnel.  Noting that women comprised a scant 3 per cent of military personnel and 9 per cent of police officers, he encouraged all troop- and police-contributing countries to strive for a gender balance in their peacekeeping contingents.

Norway’s representative commended the Peacekeeping Department’s efforts to create an early peacebuilding strategy, saying her country would provide voluntary funding to the pilot project in order to develop baseline capability standards for military peacekeeping components.  That would serve as a good basis for troop-contributing countries to better train their personnel and provide more targeted, effective capacity-building support, she added.

Indonesia’s representative emphasized the need to address shortcomings in adequately reimbursing troop-contributing countries for their equipment, presence and medical services, pointing out that the working group set up for that purpose had failed to agree on recommendations concerning troop costs.

Also during the meeting, the Special Committee re-elected Ms. Ogwu (Nigeria) as its Chair, Mohamed Sarwat Selim (Egypt) as Rapporteur and the following as Vice Chairs:  Diego Limeres (Argentina); Gilles Rivard (Canada); Asako Okai (Japan); and Zbigniew Szlek (Poland).

It also decided to create a Working Group of the Whole to consider the recommendations to be included in the Special Committee’s report to the Assembly, with Mr. Rivard serving as its Chair.

The Special Committee also adopted its provisional agenda and draft programme of work for the current session.

Other speakers today were representatives of Morocco (on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement), Hungary (on behalf of the European Union), Canada (also on behalf of Australia and New Zealand), Thailand (on behalf of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations), Fiji (on behalf of the Asian Group), United States, Brazil, Peru, Bangladesh, China, Algeria, Côte d’Ivoire, Mexico, Switzerland, Fiji, Turkey, Singapore and Pakistan.

The Special Committee will reconvene at 10 a.m. tomorrow, Wednesday, 23 February, to conclude its general debate.

Background

Meeting to begin its 2011 session this morning, the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations had before it the report of the Secretary-General on implementation of the recommendations of the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations (document A/65/680), which outlines key developments in strengthening United Nations peacekeeping in 2009 and 2010, as well as progress over the past year in clarifying and delivering on critical roles in peacekeeping, building capacity, strengthening field support arrangements, and improving arrangements for the planning, management and oversight of missions.

In the report, the Secretary-General observes that urgent action is required to ensure that peacekeeping missions have sufficient mobility, flexibility and expertise to carry out their increasingly complex mandates.  Continued support for the global field support strategy is needed to make the field support machinery more efficient and cost-effective, as are arrangements with external partners to address requirements for specialized civilian capacity, and to recruit and retain greater numbers of women.

An addendum to the report (document A/65/680/Add.1) provides an overview of the status of recommendations on the restructuring of peacekeeping; safety and security; conduct and discipline; strengthening operational capacity; strategies for complex peacekeeping operations; cooperation with troop-contributing countries; triangular cooperation between the Security Council and Secretariat and troop- and police-contributing countries; cooperation with regional arrangements; enhancement of African peacekeeping capacities; developing stronger United Nations field support arrangements; best practices; training; and personnel and financial issues.

Also before the Committee were reports of the Secretary-General on support to African Union peacekeeping operations authorized by the United Nations (document A/65/510-S/2010/514); implementation of the integrated operational teams (document A/65/669); prosecution of crimes against deployed peacekeepers (document A/65/700); and progress in the implementation of the global field support strategy (document A/65/643).

The Committee also had before it a letter dated 19 January 2011 from the Permanent Representatives of Australia and Uruguay addressed to the President of the General Assembly, which transmits a summary of the third workshop on the protection of civilians in United Nations peacekeeping operations, held in New York on 6 December 2010 (document A/65/698); and a letter dated 8 October 2010 from the Permanent Representative of Armenia addressed to the Secretary-General (document A/65/524-S/2010/544).

Opening Remarks

JOSEPH DEISS (Switzerland), President of the General Assembly, emphasized that peacekeeping — in particular the promotion of peace, security and prosperity worldwide — was tied to the core mission of the United Nations.  That flagship activity helped to stop the escalation of confrontations and saved the lives of countless men, women and children around the globe.  Military, police and civilians working under the United Nations flag contributed to that work, and the role of troop- and police-contributing countries was critical in that respect.  While peacekeeping matters operated under a Security Council mandate, it was crucial that all Member States be involved in decision-making, particularly the creation of policy and guidelines, and in ensuring their implementation.

The complexity of peacekeeping operations had increased greatly over the years, and it was essential that the United Nations adapt to new and increasing challenges, he stressed, describing the “New Horizons” initiative, introduced in July 2009, as a “major contribution” to the organization’s work on emerging crises.  Making the best use of existing resources in peacekeeping was always “a must”, but it was even more important in the face of the current global financial crisis, he stressed, adding that a recent report by the Department of Field Support was timely and relevant in that respect.

The human component of peacekeeping operations was equally important and all troop-contributing countries needed assurances that resources in the field were sufficient for their troops to accomplish their tasks, he continued.  Despite the strides made, many challenges for United Nations peacekeeping operations lay ahead.  In particular, the protection of civilians was critical, the President emphasized, expressing hope that the Special Committee would take up that question.  It was also essential to explore ways in which to enhance the nexus between peacekeeping and peacebuilding, he added.

U. JOY OGWU ( Nigeria), Chair of the Special Committee, said there were many new challenges in peacekeeping operations today, including the growing need to address the driving forces of conflict.  Armed groups had shown themselves willing to use sexual violence as a weapon of war, and young people continued to be drawn into conflicts.  The task was daunting, but the commitment of the international community to engage in the struggle against those challenges was strong, she said.  In 2010, the idea of “preparedness” had led to a new programme of work which drew on lessons learned in the field and reviewed several major new advances, including new risk-analysis capabilities and the first report released on the New Horizons initiative.

Outlining the many challenges remaining despite the progress made, she said the lack of helicopters and other essential supplies still hampered the mobility and effectiveness of peacekeeping troops.  Additionally, it was now understood that peacekeeping was but one component in the international peace architecture, which must work in coordination with other mechanisms — peacebuilding in particular.  With that in mind, it was necessary to explore ways in which to use existing resources in more efficient and effective ways, she said, noting that “quick-impact” and other activities had helped contribute to the peacebuilding aspects of peacekeeping operations.  In the current economic climate, the United Nations was pressed “to do more with less”, and it was therefore critical to invest greater efforts and resources in conflict prevention, she stressed, adding that the Special Committee had the power to “marshal the will” of the international community towards garnering resources on that front, and should do so.

ALAIN LE ROY, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, said the focus during 2011 must be on demonstrating the operational impact of the Special Committee’s policy development and peacekeeping reform efforts on key missions on the ground.  While its growth rate was slowing, peacekeeping remained very complex, with missions called upon to navigate fast-moving, politically sensitive situations on the ground.  Pointing to the myriad challenges facing peacekeeping operations in the past year, he said they included civilian protection in Darfur and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the critical need for contingency planning, rapidly deployable reserve capacity and efficient support arrangements in Haiti.  There were also challenges in Côte d’Ivoire, Sudan, Chad, Timor-Leste, Liberia and Lebanon.

Citing the Secretary-General’s progress report on implementing New Horizons — which focused on policy development, capability development, field support, and planning and oversight — he said many initiatives in that regard were interlinked and their implementation would be mutually reinforcing.  He also outlined the goals of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations in the coming year, saying:  “I hope 2011 will set us on a path towards providing our personnel with the necessary political and operational support structure, resources and guidance to deliver all of their mandated tasks effectively.”

Peacekeeping missions were applying the lessons learned from the findings of a study, released earlier this month, of 10 years of implementing Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) on women and peace and security, he said.  Missions supported institutional reform in terms of gender equality and women’s empowerment, as well as increased participation by and representation of women in elections over the last decade.  “In the next 10 years, we must go deeper and broader in supporting the empowerment of women,” he emphasized.

Regarding efforts to improve planning and oversight, he said the Secretary-General’s recent report on integrated operational teams, the principal mechanism for giving integrated strategic and operational guidance to missions, pointed to steps under way to ensure cohesion in understanding the roles, responsibilities and functions of those teams.  On capability development, he said the Peacekeeping Department and the Department of Field Support had developed a comprehensive strategy to ensure effective mandate implementation by filling critical human and material resource gaps in both military and civilian functions.  Those moves ensured that peacekeepers were well-prepared and well-trained on the basis of agreed standards for reasonable performance.

However, too many missions lacked the critical assets necessary to fulfil their mandates properly, he said.  Matching resources to mandates remained a central problem, and there were consistent shortages, particularly of military helicopters, which were vital for operations in vast, remote locations.  A shortage of 56 military helicopters, out of the required 137, was expected by April 2011, he added, citing the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS), the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) and the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) as the most affected.

He went on to note that the Secretariat had begun, in December 2009, to distribute lists of military, police, rule-of-law and other capability gaps in current missions in order systematically to identify critical requirements and support Member States in short-term and long-term planning.  Identifying the right quantity and quality of peacekeeping capabilities required a clear set of agreed capability standards.  Based on the successful experience with the comprehensive review of formed police units, a pilot initiative had been launched for military components, with a focus on operational tasks and capability requirements in infantry battalions, staff officers and military medical support, he said, adding that its results would be available by year’s end.

To better coordinate the training of peacekeepers, the Peacekeeping Department had issued mission-specific induction training standards in August 2010, he said.  As for the protection of civilians, 2010 had been an exceptionally challenging year, although troops, police and civilians on the ground continued to develop innovative approaches.  For example, pursuant to Council resolution 1925 (2010), MONUSCO had worked to improve early-warning systems, including by using telecommunications technology.  Thanks to those efforts, peacekeepers had been able to free seven abducted women, he said.

He recalled that in 2010, the Department had focused on four principal elements set out in last year’s report to the Special Committee:  developing a strategic framework to guide the drafting of a comprehensive strategy for civilian protection; developing training modules to protect civilians; outlining resource and capability requirements to implement civilian protection mandates; and examining resources and concepts of operations to assess their effectiveness in implementing such mandates.  Seeking the Special Committee’s endorsement of the draft strategic framework presented to it during informal briefings, he said the Peacekeeping and Field Support Departments had developed a draft civilian protection resource and capability matrix.  They would present for review by Member States new training modules for military, police and civilian personnel by the end of March.

Noting that demand for United Nations policing continued to grow, he said that expansion of the standing police capacity would help support field missions at start-up, downsizing and other critical transitions.  He emphasized that peacekeeping and peacebuilding remained topics of intensive debate in the General Assembly and the Council, recalling the recent Council debate on security, peace and development in which some 67 speakers had participated.

He pointed to the upcoming review of civilian capabilities and its recommendations on how to improve operational ability across the United Nations.  Following up on the Special Committee’s 2010 call for stronger dialogue on enhancing the effectiveness of peacekeeping operations, recent regional conferences had focused on military aspects including deterrence, operational readiness and the use of force.  The main objective in 2011 would be to consolidate work begun in 2010 on policy and capabilities, field support, planning and oversight, he said, seeking the Special Committee’s endorsement of the progress made thus far in order to enable reforms and innovation in the field.

SUSANA MALCORRA, Under-Secretary-General for Field Support, reviewed recent examples highlighting the Department’s role, including providing tailored logistical support to peacekeepers during the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire; support of the electoral process in post-earthquake Haiti; support of African Union troops in Somalia through a 50 per cent increase in force strength, authorized by the Security Council in December 2010; the proper liquidation of the United Nations Mission in the Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT); the extension of supply lines in Darfur; and support to the referendum process in Sudan.

Noting that peacekeeping required the international community’s constant attention, she called for “efficient and cost-effective” operations in the field, particularly during periods of financial constriction.  For example, the Department of Field Support was asking missions to seek some $90 million in savings from current personnel costs in order to fund new human resources conditions passed by the General Assembly, she said.

The Department’s Global Field Support Strategy represented a comprehensive response to the key logistical and administrative challenges faced by the United Nations, she continued.  It aimed to enable more timely mission start-up, improved provision of physical support to field missions, and increased accountability and transparency in the efficient use of resources.  Its core objectives included expediting and improving support for peacekeeping, early peacebuilding, electoral assistance, mediation support and conflict prevention; improving the safety and living conditions of personnel; and making full use of local and regional investment and capacity, among other things.

She went on to say that the Department had made progress in several areas, including the creation of global and regional service centres — in particular the re-profiling of the United Nations Logistics Base in Brindisi, Italy, as the Global Service Centre and the installation of the Regional Service Centre in Entebbe, Uganda.  Despite those strides, however, a collective challenge was ensuring that the peacekeeping reform agenda, including the Global Field Support Strategy, yielded real-time results.  That challenge had been manifested recently during the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire, where the mission had been quickly re-supplied from Entebbe in a reduced period and reduced cost, she said, adding that the Centre would be used as the United Nations planned for a future mission in South Sudan.

Other significant progress had been made in the area of field support in the last year, she said.  It included the development of the first service package, a module for a 200-person camp, which was being defined in consultation with Member States and field missions.  The development of a human resources framework was advancing in close consultation with the Office of Human Resources Management (OHRM), and proposals for a standardized funding model for the first year of operations would soon be presented.  Milestones had also been earmarked for achievement in 2011 and 2012, she said, noting that implementation teams would have further pre-defined modules of equipment available.  In addition, harmonized conditions of service and related recruitment practice guidelines would be implemented.

Each of those steps would continue to require close consultation with Member States as well as with field missions and other implementing departments across the United Nations, she continued.  Describing civilian capacities as one of the pillars of the Global Field Support Strategy, she said the Department’s focus in that regard had been to reinforce its capacities through strategic workforce planning and innovative mechanisms, which would be explored in detail in the upcoming International Review of Civilian Capacities.  With regard, finally, to the recent deliberations of the Committee of Experts Working Group, she said some critical issues remained unsolved, adding that she stood ready to continue to explore solutions as part of a more comprehensive approach to capacity development.

Statements

MOHAMMED LOULICHKI (Morocco), speaking on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement, said that UN peacekeeping was “at a crossroads”, and that the scale and complexity had reached “unprecedented levels” that posed unprecedented challenges, including overstretching the United Nations peacekeeping capabilities.  It was, therefore, necessary to abide by the Organization’s peacekeeping principles, including the consent of the parties, the non-use of force except in self-defence, and impartiality.  The Movement also believed the principles of sovereign equality, political independence and territorial integrity of all States and non-intervention in matters that were essentially within their domestic jurisdiction should be maintained.  Further, while seeing the merits of adopting new concepts, they should be consistent with the principles and terminology agreed upon in relevant intergovernmental negotiations.  Additionally, it believed that the primary responsibility of maintaining peace and security rested with the United Nations, and the role of regional organizations should be in accordance with Chapter 8 of the United Nations Charter.  Regarding United Nations support to the work of African Union peacekeeping missions, the Non-Aligned Movement recommended the strengthening of an effective partnership between the United Nations and the African Union, and stressed that the United Nations should ensure predictable and sustainable funding to those missions.

As peacekeeping missions continued to operate around the world in highly volatile environments, troops should be provided from the outset with sufficient supplies, as well as clearly defined and achievable mandates and exit strategies.  It was critical that the experiences of countries providing “boots on the ground” be taken into consideration in all respects.  The Non-Aligned Movement’s first-hand experience would, therefore, provide much information.  Additionally, the interactions between peacekeeping and peacebuilding were dynamic in scope.  The two processes should not be perceived as different boxes.  Making full use of the synergies between them was a central challenge facing early peacekeeping planning.  Further, to have a seamless transition between peacekeeping and peacebuilding it was necessary to lay down the basis for lasting socio-economic development, in particular through sustainable national ownership of peacekeeping and peacebuilding.  The United Nations needed to enter each new conflict with a specific plan coordinated with the national government.  Peacekeeping could not continue to be supported by only a fraction of Member States, but should be a collective and universal undertaking.  All developed countries, especially the five permanent members of the Security Council, should share the burden of peacekeeping and engage their troops in the field under United Nations command and control.  Effective outreach strategies for aspiring or former troop-contributing countries were also needed.

Regarding the Global Field Support Strategy, which aimed to improve the quality and effectiveness of service delivery in an integrated, transparent manner, the Non-Aligned Movement emphasized the need to ensure the highest quality of service to peacekeeping troops, including through clear management frameworks, reporting lines and accountability frameworks.  In view of the increasing complexity of peacekeeping needs, flexibility in the use of resources was needed.  He reaffirmed that the protection of civilians was primarily the responsibility of a host country, and that successfully conducting tasks related to civilian protection, when a United Nations mandate existed, required a “holistic approach” that encompassed the provision of timely resources, logistical support and the required training.  The Movement deplored that critical gaps in the protection of civilians remained and said that it was “high time to find a solution” to that pending issue.  Finally, he stressed that the reimbursement to troop-contributing countries on account of death remained a major concern, and he called on the Secretariat to proceed to the compensation of all cases of death and disability occurring while serving the United Nations, unless they were on account of gross negligence or were self-inflicted.

Statements

MOHAMMED LOULICHKI (Morocco), speaking on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement, said that UN peacekeeping was “at a crossroads”, and that the scale and complexity had reached “unprecedented levels” that posed unprecedented challenges, including overstretching the United Nations peacekeeping capabilities.  It was, therefore, necessary to abide by the Organization’s peacekeeping principles, including the consent of the parties, the non-use of force except in self-defence, and impartiality.  The Movement also believed the principles of sovereign equality, political independence and territorial integrity of all States and non-intervention in matters that were essentially within their domestic jurisdiction should be maintained.  Further, while seeing the merits of adopting new concepts, they should be consistent with the principles and terminology agreed upon in relevant intergovernmental negotiations.  Additionally, it believed that the primary responsibility of maintaining peace and security rested with the United Nations, and the role of regional organizations should be in accordance with Chapter 8 of the United Nations Charter.  Regarding United Nations support to the work of African Union peacekeeping missions, the Non-Aligned Movement recommended the strengthening of an effective partnership between the United Nations and the African Union, and stressed that the United Nations should ensure predictable and sustainable funding to those missions.

As peacekeeping missions continued to operate around the world in highly volatile environments, troops should be provided from the outset with sufficient supplies, as well as clearly defined and achievable mandates and exit strategies.  It was critical that the experiences of countries providing “boots on the ground” be taken into consideration in all respects.  The Non-Aligned Movement’s first-hand experience would, therefore, provide much information.  Additionally, the interactions between peacekeeping and peacebuilding were dynamic in scope.  The two processes should not be perceived as different boxes.  Making full use of the synergies between them was a central challenge facing early peacekeeping planning.  Further, to have a seamless transition between peacekeeping and peacebuilding it was necessary to lay down the basis for lasting socio-economic development, in particular through sustainable national ownership of peacekeeping and peacebuilding.  The United Nations needed to enter each new conflict with a specific plan coordinated with the national government.  Peacekeeping could not continue to be supported by only a fraction of Member States, but should be a collective and universal undertaking.  All developed countries, especially the five permanent members of the Security Council, should share the burden of peacekeeping and engage their troops in the field under United Nations command and control.  Effective outreach strategies for aspiring or former troop-contributing countries were also needed.

Regarding the Global Field Support Strategy, which aimed to improve the quality and effectiveness of service delivery in an integrated, transparent manner, the Non-Aligned Movement emphasized the need to ensure the highest quality of service to peacekeeping troops, including through clear management frameworks, reporting lines and accountability frameworks.  In view of the increasing complexity of peacekeeping needs, flexibility in the use of resources was needed.  He reaffirmed that the protection of civilians was primarily the responsibility of a host country, and that successfully conducting tasks related to civilian protection, when a United Nations mandate existed, required a “holistic approach” that encompassed the provision of timely resources, logistical support and the required training.  The Movement deplored that critical gaps in the protection of civilians remained and said that it was “high time to find a solution” to that pending issue.  Finally, he stressed that the reimbursement to troop-contributing countries on account of death remained a major concern, and he called on the Secretariat to proceed to the compensation of all cases of death and disability occurring while serving the United Nations, unless they were on account of gross negligence or were self-inflicted.

CSABA KÖRÖSI (Hungary), speaking on behalf of the European Union, said in the last session of the Special Committee important progress had been made on civilian protection, but more must be done to improve planning and implementation of civilian mandates.  He lauded formation of the strategic framework for civilian protection strategies.  He supported the Secretariat’s intention to develop benchmarks to effectively implement civilian protection mandates and encouraged better coordination in that regard at Headquarters and in the field.  He encouraged the Secretariat to continue to develop comprehensive capability-driven approaches and supported the Secretariat’s pilot project in that regard.  He looked forward to the recommendations of the civilian capacities review and welcomed creation of the justice and corrections standing capacity.  He strongly supported development of the global field support strategy.  The Secretariat should work to ensure that it led to the expected results and efficiency gains.  He called on Member States to duly consider the current evaluation on command and control structures.

He supported swift use of the indicators to track implementation of Council resolution 1325 to prevent sexual violence, protect women’s rights in conflict and post-conflict situations, and promote women’s participation in conflict resolution and peace processes.  He called for fully implementing the Peacekeeping Department’s child protection policy.  The recent drop in the reports of sexual assaults and abuse by United Nations peacekeepers was a direct result of implementation of the “zero tolerance” policy and such efforts must continue.  He strongly condemned targeted attacks on United Nations personnel, as well as any restrictions to their freedom of movement.  He called for continued efforts to improve safety and security for United Nations personnel.  To minimize the gaps between needs, expectations and performance, the focus must be on increasing efficiency and strengthening the United Nations capacity to deliver and have a real impact on the ground.

CHRISTOPHER SIMONDS, Military Adviser for Canada, speaking on behalf of Canada, Australia and New Zealand, said that the past year had seen some key successes in United Nations peacekeeping activities.  The mission in Liberia, the successful referendum in South Sudan and the response of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti following that country’s devastating earthquake were some clear examples.  Against those rays of light, there had also been significant setbacks.  Events such as those in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Côte d’Ivoire had raised serious concerns about the Organization’s performance, both in terms of capacity and capabilities.  A single dominant issue that had put peacekeepers to the test was the mandated task of protecting civilians.  In that respect, reaching a consensus on the Strategic Framework for Drafting Comprehensive Protection of Civilian Strategies, the development of which was called for by the Special Committee itself, was now imperative.  Endorsement of that Framework would enable the preparation of clearer guidance on the ground and would lay the foundation for the development of personnel and mission leadership in fulfilling their responsibilities.

The need for that Framework, among other things, reflected the essential requirement of peacekeeping missions to better adapt to the complexities of the “multi-dimensional operating space”, and for peacekeeping forces to be more agile. As the increased agility of peacekeepers started with sound decision-making on the part of commanders at all levels, it was essential that the Committee examine the ways and means to enhance the situational awareness of field commanders, including through the use of modern technologies.  The Committee should address gaps in capacity, including shortages in critical mobility capabilities, including military utility helicopters and essential vehicles, and arrive at concrete conclusions about how best to address those issues.  He was also particularly concerned about cuts to the training budget in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations during the current complex global peacekeeping environment.

Noting the importance of linking peacekeeping and peacebuilding, he said that lessons learned in the missions in Timor-Leste and Liberia might offer insights into the key elements of successfully managing the path of transition.  Additionally, as the focus shifted toward peacebuilding, it would be necessary to identify those specialist skills required early in the onset of a mission, and a wide variety of specialist resources should be made available.  More progress must also be made in the inclusion of gender perspectives for peacekeeping in line with Security Council resolution 1325 (2000), in particular in providing legal and physical protection for women and children and allowing their voices to be heard in decisions that determined their future.  In considering support to operations, he had been encouraged by the collaborative nature of the development of the concepts associated with the Global Field Support Strategy, with work to the current point appropriately recognizing the concerns and inputs of troop- and police-contributing countries.

OCTAVIO ERRÁZURIZ (Chile), speaking on behalf of the Rio Group, said that as most of the military and police personnel deployed in peacekeeping missions were from developing countries, those countries must be meaningfully involved in all aspects and stages of peacekeeping.  He asked the Security Council to continue holding private meetings with troop-contributing and police-contributing countries, with sufficient time before the Council’s consultations on such matters, and to take such countries’ perspectives into account.  He called for strengthening the periodic information sessions on military issues, particularly when the safety of peacekeeping personnel was threatened on the ground.  He supported the “zero tolerance” policy and called for continued implementation of the Organization’s strategy to support victims who had been sexually abused by United Nations personnel.  He noted progress in reimbursing Member States in a timely manner for their contributions to peacekeeping, but said there was room for improvement.  He urged the Secretariat to seek practical steps to give equal treatment to all missions.

Regarding the recent agreement of the Working Group on Reimbursement of Contingent Owned Equipment on revised rates for equipment and medical services, he said its recommendations were below the Rio Group’s expectations.  He asked the Working Group to review the results of the periodic inspections at the end of the current process, and afterwards on a triennial basis, to provide technical guidance to the Assembly’s Fifth Committee.  The Assembly should consider a temporary increase in compensation for troop-contributing countries for the impact of inflation in the last decade.  Also, he asked that all peacekeeping training materials be translated into Spanish and Portuguese.  On the issue of gender balance, he said the fact that in peacekeeping operations only 3 per cent of military personnel and 9 per cent of police were women illustrated the need for mechanisms to enhance women’s participation.  He encouraged all troop-contributing and police-contributing countries to increase the number of deployed women.  He also reiterated the Rio Group’s support for the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) and said it should remain as long as necessary.

NATTAWUT SABYEROOP(Thailand), speaking on behalf of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), stressed the importance of the basic principles of United Nations peacekeeping operations:  consent of the parties; impartiality; non-use of force except in self-defence; adherence to the United Nations Charter; respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity; and non-intervention in domestic matters.  A successful peacekeeping operation must originate through a clear, credible and achievable mandate, he said, strongly encouraging consultations with troop- and police-contributing countries in the early stages of mandate drafting.

Regarding the protection of civilians, the primary responsibility lay with the host country, he said.  Such a mandate required a comprehensive approach, with sufficient resources, provided to missions in a timely manner, and with troops and police personnel receiving sufficient and up-to-date training.  In that regard, ASEAN encouraged the Peacekeeping Department to work with Member States to complete the training modules on protection of civilians.  It also attached great importance to sustainable peace and security, which required a holistic approach linking peacekeeping and peacebuilding, among other elements.  Sustainable development must also be assured for sustainable peace in post-conflict States, he said, stressing in that context that national ownership remained the fundamental principle behind which any international engagement should align.

Speaking, in his national capacity, he reaffirmed his country’s commitment to supporting United Nations peacekeeping operations, noting that Thailand had contributed nearly 20,000 troops and police officers as well as civilian staff to the Organization’s peacekeeping operations over the last two decades.

PETER THOMPSON ( Fiji), speaking on behalf of the Asian Group, said Asian countries contributed about 49 per cent of the total number of United Nations peacekeepers around the world.  Asia hosted eight of 17 peacekeeping missions, and three of the top 10 financial contributors to United Nations peacekeeping belonged to the region.  He echoed the sentiments of other delegations to the effect that peacekeeping was at a “crossroads”, with increasing demands and complexity creating numerous new challenges ranging from planning to mandate design, force generation, deployment, and management, to drawdown and withdrawal of missions.

He stressed that respect for the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter — especially those of sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of States, and non-intervention in domestic matters — was crucial to promoting peace and security.  Peacekeeping was not a stand-alone exercise, but should also address the root causes of conflicts, including economic exploitation and national peacebuilding needs, he said, emphasizing that peacekeeping operations should not be a substitute for addressing the root causes of conflict.  He called on the Security Council to place greater emphasis on conflict prevention, the peaceful settlement of disputes and better exit strategies.

The Asian Group was concerned about shortcomings in determining the responsibility of the United Nations for the maintenance of the rights of those working under its umbrella, he said.  The Asian Group proposed that relevant United Nations bodies and committees consider the regulations needed for addressing such issues.  Additionally, it was essential to enlarge the base of troop-contributing countries, he said, calling on all Member States that had the capacity to contribute troops to step forward in that regard.

DAVID DUNN ( United States) said the last year had shown the real importance of United Nations peacekeeping in situations such as the political crisis in Côte d’Ivoire, the post-earthquake reconstruction in Haiti, and others.  President Barack Obama had emphasized the core role of peacekeeping in his address to the General Assembly in 2010, he recalled, adding that his country had trained more than 120,000 peacekeeping troops since 2005 and thousands more through partner countries.  It had sustained its commitment to United Nations peacekeeping operations to the magnitude of about $2 billion annually, and through other related funds.

In the past year, he said, much progress had been made in fleshing out the Global Field Support Strategy and the New Horizons initiative, as well as in streamlining support to field missions through regional centres and the newly restructured supply hub in Brindisi, Italy, among other achievements.  Nevertheless, the United States still had questions about the reform process, and looked forward to the Special Committee’s current session to help answer them.  There was a need for operational effectiveness, which required the right mix of personnel, leadership, resources and other critical elements, he said.  However, operational effectiveness in peacekeeping was also a state of mind, he pointed out, stressing that peacekeepers should have an understanding of their mandate and be supplied with the resources and capabilities to carry it out.

HASAN KLEIB ( Indonesia) urged the Peacekeeping and Field Support Departments, as well as other concerned stakeholders, to take more effective measures to prevent harm to United Nations peacekeepers, including by implementing the Global Field Support Strategy.  Indonesia hoped the new policy on security risk management, which had taken effect in November, would produce concrete results.  The Council and the Secretariat must provide the equipment and resources needed for peacekeepers to carry out their tasks, particularly civilian protection, he said, emphasizing that clear mission goals and apparatus were vital, as was the source and capability matrix.

It was necessary to address the shortcomings in reimbursing troop contributors, he said, welcoming the consensus reached by the Working Group on reimbursement rates for major equipment, self-sustainment, medical support services and procedures for future reimbursement reviews.  However, the Working Group had failed to agree on recommendations concerning troop costs, he noted, calling for improved information exchange and coordination among peacekeeping bodies.  Indonesia expected that the review of international civilian capabilities would shed light on the way in which countries and regional organizations from the South would be brought in to help build institutions in countries emerging from conflict.  As the sixteenth largest contributor of peacekeeping troops and police personnel, and in line with the need for balanced geographic representation, Indonesia should have representation in the Peacekeeping and Field Support Departments at Headquarters in the near future, he said.

REGINA MARIA CORDEIRO DUNLAP ( Brazil) said the success of peacekeeping depended on its sustainability.  There was an emerging consensus, focused on the inter-linkage between peacekeeping and peacebuilding, on how to ensure that the peace sowed by the United Nations was sustainable.  In that vein, it was necessary to ensure a greater role for peacekeeping missions in peacebuilding activities, particularly where such activities could help foster economic development and social inclusion, she said.  The Special Committee should take note of conceptual strides made in that area and encourage the Peacekeeping Department to continue its reflection on that issue.

She went on to note that peacekeeping missions must support local Governments and populations in building a peaceful society.  They must not treat local populations as defenceless victims to be protected, but instead engage with them and be clear about their mission and mandate.  Troop- and police-contributing States should feel that there were adequate political and material conditions for them to be able to continue to participate in peacekeeping, she said, expressing hope that the Special Committee’s report would acknowledge the results of the 2011 meeting of the Working Group on Contingent-Owned Equipment, and address the crucial issue of troop costs.  For the peacekeeping system to continue to enjoy political legitimacy, all Member States must be able to engage in it, she stressed, adding that the Special Committee’s working methods should allow for the effective participation of all interested Member States.  More work could also be done to ensure that its report was a dynamic policy document, she added.

GONZALO GUTIÉRREZ (Peru) called for strengthening peacekeeping operations through integrated strategies based on the specific needs of each case, national ownership and a transition to sustainable peace.  Recalling the recent Security Council debate on the interdependence between security and development, which had focused on the links between development, security, respect for human rights, and humanitarian assistance, he stressed the important role of peacekeeping operations in institutional development, national capacity development and support for socio-economic rehabilitation — all of which should be taken into account when developing and implementing integrated strategies.

He called for sufficient resources to carry out needed reform and define the scope of peacekeeping mandates, as well as for a greater presence of personnel from troop-contributing and police-contributing countries in the Peacekeeping Department’s military and command structures.  It was important to learn from past peacekeeping experiences in Darfur, Liberia, Timor-Leste and other countries, he said, underscoring the urgent need for clearer civilian-protection mandates in terms of protecting against physical threat and ensuring human rights and respect for international humanitarian law.  In that regard, he called for advanced studies and continuous evaluation of risks faced in the field, while condemning attacks and violence against peacekeepers, and urging States to fulfil their obligation to bring perpetrators of such attacks to justice.

IBRAHIM JAMAL ( Bangladesh) said there was dire need to strengthen the police component of peacekeeping operations, adding that integrated training services were needed to enhance capacity, close capability gaps and improve preparedness.  Bangladesh welcomed the New Horizons initiative, he said, emphasizing that all such peacekeeping initiatives should be in line with the United Nations Charter.  It called for stronger ties between the United Nations and regional organizations, and for the Organization to work towards bridging capability gaps through dialogue.  Recent progress had been made in several aspects of peacekeeping, he said, citing the Global Field Support Strategy, the world body’s strong support for the African Union and other achievements as examples of that progress.  Nonetheless, there was a need to complete the modular concept and to create a mechanism for risk management, both at Headquarters and in the field, he said, calling also for a better system for reporting incidents, greater synergies among all actors involved in peacekeeping, and flexibility through contingency planning.  As one of the world’s leading troop-contributing countries, Bangladesh expected to receive a proportionate number of posts in the field, he stressed.

TINE MORCH SMITH ( Norway) called for strengthening the ability of the United Nations to carry out early peacebuilding tasks like justice- and security-sector reform, disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, national reconciliation and human rights assistance.  She welcomed efforts to create an early peacebuilding strategy, and pledged that her country would provide voluntary funding for the New Horizon pilot project to develop baseline capability standards for military peacekeeping components, which would serve as a good basis for troop-contributing countries to improve the training of their troops and provide more targeted, effective capacity-building support for contributing countries.

Better personnel recruitment was needed to strengthen field performance, she continued, calling for a stronger emphasis on reforming the police, rule-of-law and security sectors.  Norway looked forward to the review of international civilian capacities, as well as for the integration of a gender perspective into peacekeeping.  The country’s Minister for Defence had pledged to conduct a gender analysis of Norwegian military operations and to adjust operational demands accordingly, she said, welcoming the gender training strategy of the Peacekeeping and Field Support Departments.  She stressed the importance of the incorporation of pre-deployment and in-mission training modules in order better to protect civilians, and pledged Norway’s support in that regard.  Recent reports of rape in the Democratic Republic of the Congo showed there was still a long way to go, she noted.

WANG MIN ( China) recalled that in 2010, 164 peacekeepers had sacrificed their lives in the service of the United Nations, emphasizing that while peacekeeping operations had made significant contributions to peace, challenges remained, and the Organization needed to come up with appropriate responses.  China therefore welcomed proposals for peacekeeping reform, he said.

He said that carrying out integrated coordination of transition and reconstruction — through peacekeeping and peacebuilding operations with clear exit strategies — was essential to ensuring the self-reliance of countries as soon as possible.  In implementing peacebuilding mandates, attention should be paid to the particular country in question and its role in driving the process.  Regarding the protection of civilians, he emphasized that sovereign States bore primary responsibility and peacekeeping mandates should respect that and avoid becoming parties to any conflict.

While paying attention to legitimate humanitarian concerns in the challenge of protecting civilians, States should be consulted and the challenges of that mandate acknowledged, he said, adding that non-use of force was an important principle of peacekeeping.  The United Nations should take a prudent approach, he said, stressing that “robust peacekeeping” should be implemented carefully and only on a case-by-case basis.  China had taken an active part in United Nations peacekeeping efforts by contributing some 240,000 troops to missions, he said, calling on all Member States also to contribute in an effort to correct the problem of peacekeepers coming mainly from developing counties.

MOURAD BENMEHIDI ( Algeria) said peacekeeping operations should not be a substitute for addressing the root causes of conflict, which must be undertaken through the relevant political and socio-economic instruments.  Civilian protection should be integral to all peacekeeping mission mandates, he said, noting that it currently applied to only eight missions.  The issue of adequate capacities must be addressed within that framework and according to the realities of each mission, he said.  Regarding robust missions, he said they should focus on all aspects of an operation, not just the military components.  Missions should also incorporate, early on, the advice of the Peacebuilding Commission, international financial institutions and United Nations development actors in order to support the priorities of host-country Governments.  In the past few years, the African Union had shown its willingness to deploy peacekeeping support operations to help stabilize fragile environments, he recalled, noting, however, that the regional body still faced serious resource, logistical and capacity constraints that hampered the ability of its operations fully to discharge their mandates.  Algeria called for predictable, sustainable and flexible funding for African peacekeeping.

YOUSSOUFOU BAMBA ( C ôte d’Ivoire) thanked the United Nations and its mission in his country for its help in working towards the resolution of the ongoing Ivorian political crisis.  Côte d’Ivoire was pleased with the Security Council’s “robust response”, through its resolutions 1967 (2011) and 1968 (2011), which had authorized an increase in the strength of the United Nations Operations in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) by 2,000 troops.  Peacekeeping operations were an irreplaceable tool for providing essential support to those who found themselves in armed conflict situations around the world, he said.  Nonetheless, United Nations peacekeeping must evolve in order to adapt to current challenges.

He said his country favoured the establishment of a policy that would ensure effective cooperation between peacekeeping missions and regional organizations such as the Economic Commission of West African States (ECOWAS), which had been instrumental in the Ivorian crisis, and others.  The situation in Côte d’Ivoire continued to threaten the stability and peace of the wider West African subregion.  Amid human rights violations, UNOCI patrols were increasingly prevented from carrying out their mandate to protect civilians, and some 500 deaths had taken place since the start of the present crisis, he said.

Recalling that troops loyal to former President Laurent Gbagbo had opened fire on United Nations staff, he said 50,000 refugees had fled to other countries, with some 30,000 remaining displaced internally.  The legitimate Government of Côte d’Ivoire called on the international community to do everything possible to help peacekeepers in that country fulfil their essential mandate of protecting civilians, he said, describing the situation as a vivid illustration of the need for Member States to unite in adopting urgent and effective peacekeeping measures based on respect for the will of the people, and to discourage attacks on civilians by punishing those who committed atrocities.

CLAUDE HELLER ( Mexico) stressed the need for clear, credible peacekeeping mandates with adequate resources to support them, the unequivocal commitment of parties to a peaceful solution to conflict, a general peace agreement that addressed the structural causes of conflict, and the understanding of all parties and affected populations of the peacekeeping mission’s objectives, which must include an exit strategy.  He called for ongoing, substantive dialogue involving the Security Council, the Special Committee, the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary), the Peacebuilding Commission, troop-contributing countries and the main financial contributors to peacekeeping operations.

There was also a need for strategic partnerships between the world body and regional and subregional organizations, and for bolstering local conflict-prevention and conflict-resolution capacity, he said, underscoring the need to ensure full respect for Council resolution 1502 (2003) on protecting United Nations personnel.  That was particularly relevant in Côte d’Ivoire, he added.  The Security Council and the Secretariat must work towards greater clarity of peacekeeping mandates, ensuing responsibilities and oversight mechanisms, such as the use of benchmarks.  There was also a need to better protect women and children during armed conflict.  The guidance of the Secretary-General’s Special Representatives and the Council’s Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict must be a central reference point for peacekeeping operations to confront such situations, he emphasized.

SERGE A. BAVAUD (Switzerland) said his delegation was pleased with the “dynamic nature” of the discussion, saying it highlighted three subjects that should have priority in the current session:  the protection of civilians; the relationship between peacekeeping and peacebuilding; and the role of women in peacekeeping.  Regarding civilian protection — which remained one of the essential operational tasks of United Nations peacekeeping operations — Switzerland welcomed the Secretariat’s presentation of a framework designed to help mission leadership develop comprehensive protection strategies and fully supported those efforts, he said, adding that such coordinated efforts should preserve the independence of humanitarian actors, including United Nations agencies.  Switzerland asked the Peacekeeping Department to consider that issue more closely.

Regarding peacekeeping and peacebuilding, he said there was a need for “coherent, realistic and coordinated conceptualization” in the interest of ensuring a lasting peace with sustainable development.  Related documents, including the report of the co-facilitators on the review of the United Nations peacebuilding architecture, the review of civilian capacities and the World Bank’s World Development Report 2011, should be considered in that regard.  On the subject of women and peacekeeping, he welcomed the creation of a series of global indicators to ensure follow-up to Security Council resolution 1325 (2000), and called on the Special Committee to recognize those indicators.  The Special Committee should also give systematic consideration to the problems specific to gender that arose in the context of peacekeeping tasks, particularly those related to the protection of civilians, he stressed.

Mr. THOMSON ( Fiji), speaking in his national capacity, called for closer cooperation among the Security Council, troop- and police-contributing countries and the Secretariat.  He said peacekeeping mandates should be based on thorough, timely assessment and sound intelligence, and must have adequate resources, commensurate with their needs.  Missions should be flexible enough to discharge their mandates effectively, and always focus on the welfare and safety of the peacekeepers, he said, emphasising the importance of remembering that they were not commodities and that the United Nations was not a commercial entity.  Fiji welcomed the ongoing work on the New Horizons strategy and the Global Field Support Strategy, as well as the efforts of the Peacekeeping and Field Support Departments to create an early peacebuilding strategy for peacekeepers.  Missions needed clear guidelines to become more effective tools for long-term stability and economic recovery, he said, calling for clear links and chains of command between officers in the field and military advisers and decision-makers at Headquarters in order to ensure that informed decisions were made in a timely manner.

ERTUĞRUL APAKAN (Turkey) said his country was a contributor of troops and police personnel, not only to United Nations operations but also to other missions conducted by regional organizations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union and others.  Turkey had hosted a summit on peacekeeping, peacebuilding and related issues last September in Istanbul, he recalled, adding that his country recognized the complexities faced by United Nations peacekeepers, and expressing full support for the Organization’s peacekeeping efforts.  An integrated, coherent and well-coordinated political-strategic framework was necessary, he said, emphasizing that peacekeeping mandates should be commensurate with the resources allocated to them, and enjoy predictable, professional and flexible logistical support systems, as well as the tools and means to raise the performance of troops and police.

Among other recent achievements, the Global Field Support Strategy was an excellent approach to addressing those challenges, he said, stressing the importance of enhancing the Police Division’s capacity to perform mandated tasks more effectively and to emphasize training as a core dimension of the capability-driven approach.  The Partnership for Peace Training Centre in Turkey had conducted a number of courses for peacekeepers in that regard, he said.  Describing partnerships between United Nations peacekeeping operations and regional organizations, particularly the African Union, as essential, he said further efforts were also needed to enhance interaction among the Secretariat, the Security Council and the troop- and police-contributing countries.  The contributors should be consulted and more involved in decision-making, he said, calling also for a better balanced distribution of professional peacekeeping posts.  Troop-contributing countries were not adequately represented in the Secretariat, he emphasized, calling for that imbalance to be rectified.

LIM YOON BOON (Singapore) urged the Secretariat to work with Member States to better coordinate efforts to bolster civilian and police capacities and to finance peacebuilding tasks.  Despite the development of a strategic framework for civilian protection, operational challenges remained daunting.  The lack of capabilities and field resources, as well as inadequate civilian protection training for peacekeepers, had prevented effective implementation of such mandates.  It was time to move from concept to reality.  To resolve resource and capability gaps, he urged the Peacekeeping Department to look beyond its traditional military resources pool and consider building more police and civilian capacity in the Police Division and other agencies.  He called for urgent completion of the draft training module and guidelines for review and consultation by Member States and military commanders, so that civilian protection tasks could be effectively implemented in the field.  He also urged the Peacekeeping Department and the Police Division to consult with Member States on the action plan for international police peacekeeping, in order to build international police capacities with other military peacekeeping entities in a comprehensive, coherent way.  He urged the Department of Field Service to seek better and more effective field support solutions, noting the lack of clarity on the distinction between global services packages and regional services packages.

AMJAD HUSSAIN B. SIAL (Pakistan) said that Pakistan had been in the forefront of supporting United Nations peacekeeping for more than 50 years.  It was currently the largest contributor to United Nations peacekeeping missions, with over 10,600 personnel deployed to nine missions.  Over the last decade, the demands on peacekeeping had grown tremendously in magnitude and complexity.  In that environment, peacekeeping should not be used as a “stopgap measure”, but should be part of a comprehensive political solution that also addressed the underlying causes of a conflict, including economic and human exploitation.  Modern peacekeeping should also have the protection of civilians as one of its objectives.  At the same time, Pakistan reiterated its emphasis on the role of the host country as the primary actor in achieving that objective.  There was a need to exercise caution in introducing new concepts advocating the use of force by peacekeepers for implementing mandated tasks, including the protection of civilians.  Those concepts needed to be considered within the framework of the guiding principles of peacekeeping, including the consent of parties, impartiality and the non-use of force except in the case of self-defence.

Regarding the Global Field Support Strategy, he said care should be taken that its efforts did not undermine the operational effectiveness of field missions.  He then outlined a number of key concerns of troop-contributing countries, including:  that the conduct of peacekeeping operations needed to be driven by the unique needs of each mission, not by political or financial considerations; that troop-contributing counties needed to be consulted in the drawing up of mandates, as well as in their implementation, and in making any changes to them; that there should be a greater representation from those troop-contributing countries at United Nations Headquarters; ways to improve the safety and security of troops should be considered by the Special Committee; and the process for reimbursements on account of death and disability must be streamlined.

In closing, he said the Committee should avoid peripheral issues and controversial concepts with dubious utility.  Rather, the focus should be on substantive issues that related directly to the common objective — making peacekeeping work even better.

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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.