The range of crises on the agenda of the Security Council at the start of 2015, as well as progress in Haiti seen on a recent visiting mission, showed the importance of addressing the root causes of conflict, the Permanent Representative of Chile, President of the body for January, said in a monthly wrap-up meeting this morning.
In that light, Cristián Barros Melet underlined the importance of the open debate held in January on “Inclusive Development and the Maintenance of International Peace and Security”, presided over by Chilean President Michelle Bachelet. Thanking Council members for their work during the month, Mr. Barros particularly expressed appreciation for their contributions to the presidential statement that resulted from that debate.
Ahead of the President’s statement, Council members took the floor, with most expressing appreciation for the Haiti visit and voicing hope it would help to resolve the political deadlock there. As well, members commended the open debate held on inclusive development, although the representative of the Russian Federation, Vitaly Churkin, cautioned against the Council delving too far into the work of other bodies.
Many also welcomed the holding of Arria Formula and interactive-format meetings during the month, with Lithuania’s representative, Raimonda Murmokaitė, and others urging greater use of such innovative formats, including so-called “horizon-scanning” sessions. They underlined as well the importance of the open meeting on protection of civilians in armed conflict, which had been postponed until tomorrow.
Most speakers, in addition, expressed deep concern over developing crises such as those in Yemen, Libya and Ukraine, with some expressing regret that the Council could not reach consensus on timely action.
Continuing violence by extremists, particularly the self-proclaimed Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant/Sham (ISIL/ISIS), was also a topic of much discussion this morning. The representative of Nigeria, Kayode Laro, and the representative of France, François Delattre, thanked the international community for the concern expressed over terrorist attacks in their countries.
Most speakers also expressed regret that little progress had been made on the Syrian crisis, the Middle East, including the Palestinian question, and other persistent challenges. Deep concern was voiced over developments in the Central African Republic, attacks in Mali and the stalled demobilization of armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, among other ongoing situations.
The representatives of new Council members Angola, New Zealand, Malaysia, and Spain — Ismael Abraão Gaspar Martins, Jim McLay, Hussein Haniff and Fernando Fernández-Arias Minuesa, respectively — affirmed the formidable challenges facing the body while underlining their strong belief in its continued relevance.
Members also emphasized the necessity of unity for the Council’s effectiveness; crises on which little progress had been made were situations on which consensus was lacking. Venezuela’s representative, Rafael Darío Ramírez Carreño, called for continuing attention to inequality and marginalization as contributors to conflict, as addressed by the open debate on inclusive development.
Some members, urging timely action on developing situations, expressed appreciation for meetings that had been called on short notice. In that context, Mr. McLay of New Zealand urged the reaching of swift consensus on such situations so that the Council action stayed relevant. Some speakers, on the other hand, called for more time to consider texts for which the deadline was known in advance.
Also speaking were representatives of China, United States, Chad, United Kingdom and Jordan.
The meeting started at 10:30 a.m. and ended at 12:00 p.m.