I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union.
At the outset, I would like to thank you for your opening remarks and take this opportunity to reaffirm the EU’s strong support to the United Nations in the field of peacekeeping.
Despite some difficulties observed in UN peacekeeping during the last few years, the EU considers UN peacekeeping not only as the most visible UN activity, but also as an effective factor of ensuring security, the protection of civilians and providing humanitarian assistance. Nevertheless, nearly a decade after the “Brahimi Report”, it is time to revisit the panels recommendations, review their implementation and look strategically into future UN peacekeeping challenges.
In this regard, I would like to seize this opportunity in order to present the EU member states´ perspective on the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations (C-34) outcomes.
The EU considers the timely adoption of the C-34 report this year as a success. In particular, the EU is heartened by the mutual understanding and cooperation that was achieved amongst delegations. This collaborative spirit significantly contributed to the overall progress achieved during discussions on the improvement of UN peacekeeping operations.
A streamlined and meaningful 2009 C-34 report, delivered in due time, should provide other UN fora with a useful tool for dealing with peacekeeping issues.
The initiative recently launched by France and the UK within the Security Council, the Australian-Uruguayan Workshop on the Protection of Civilians, Canada’s thematic Peacekeeping seminars and the New Horizons Project constitute an invaluable source of data for the C-34 to play its institutional role as the only UN mandated forum to consider UN peacekeeping in all its aspects. Those discussions should provide a rich source of background information for the C-34s own deliberations on what should be developed to enhance UN peacekeeping operations and on what should be asked of the Secretariat and the UN Secretary-General in preparing the annual report.
The EU would like to stress the necessity to achieve, in due time, a focused, streamlined and meaningful C-34 report next year. The EU will continue in its efforts to give particular attention to the most pressing and contemporary issues related to current and upcoming peacekeeping operations. In this regard, we recognize the paramount importance of close cooperation with all regional groups and other important players.
The EU sincerely hopes that its view on the purpose and potential of the C-34 is shared by all those who consider peacekeeping as a flagship UN activity.
In closing, I would like to express thanks on behalf of the EU to all of the delegations involved in the C-34 substantive session for their contribution to our common UN peacekeeping endeavor.
I would also like to thank the Permanent Representative of Nigeria, H.E. Mrs. U. Joy Ogwu, for chairing the C-34 substantive session, as well as the Deputy Permanent Representative of Canada, H.E. Mr. Henri-Paul Normandin, for his leadership of the ad hoc C-34 Working Group.