Prevention Key to Saving Lives, Money, Secretary-General Tells Alliance for Peacebuilding 2017 Annual Conference

SG/SM/18743
11 October 2017

Prevention Key to Saving Lives, Money, Secretary-General Tells Alliance for Peacebuilding 2017 Annual Conference

Following is the text of UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ video message to the Alliance for Peacebuilding 2017 Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., today:

I send warm greetings to the Alliance for Peacebuilding and the United States Institute of Peace.

Our world faces complex and interrelated challenges: shifts in international geopolitics, exclusion and inequalities, climate change and transnational organized crime.  In response, the United Nations needs to expand its tools to deal with conflict, beyond mediation and peacekeeping.

The UN is now working to support the concept of sustaining peace.  That means bringing together Governments and all national stakeholders in inclusive partnerships to prevent the outbreak, continuation, escalation and recurrence of violent conflict.

Prevention is the priority.  Prevention saves lives and money.  But the incentives are not always lined up.  That’s why we need your help.  I hope you will play a part in two key areas.

First, prevention must involve all stakeholders: peacekeeping, development, justice, human rights and humanitarian activities.  We need broad partnerships with young people, women, civil society groups and local organizations, including the private sector, to create momentum for transformative change.

Second, we need to act more quickly and earlier to address grievances long before they escalate into a crisis.  The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provides important entry points.

For my part, I am fully committed to work with civil society.  We know the challenges.  Together, we can find answers.

I thank you for your commitment and wish you a successful meeting.

For information media. Not an official record.