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The EU's commitment to effective multilateralism, with the UN at its core, is a central element of its external action. As a UN observer with enhanced status, the EU delegation coordinates with its 28 Member States to speak with one voice. The EU also works closely with the UN secretariat and its agencies, funds & programmes, partnering on a range of global issues and challenges.

Summary: 3 November 2014, New York – European Union Statement by Amb. Ioannis Vrailas, Deputy Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations, at the 69th Session of the UN General Assembly Fourth Committee on Agenda item 53: Comprehensive review of special political missions

– As delivered –


Mr. Chair,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its Member States.

The Candidate Countries the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Serbia*and Albania*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.

We wish to thank USG Feltman for his briefing and the introduction of the report of the Secretary-General on the overall policy matters pertaining to special political missions.

Over recent years the international community has seen the emergence of increasingly complex crises. Longer-term efforts to consolidate stability and build just and effective states with fair, peaceful and inclusive societies have also been, more often than not, confronted with fluid situations. At the United Nations efforts for conflict prevention, peacemaking and peacebuilding, special political missions should remain a flexible instrument in the efforts to maintain international peace and security.

Taking into account the changes in the nature of crises, as well as the increased complexity demanded of the United Nations, the EU and its Member States consider it important to seek to identify and address the new challenges. In this context, and as we have already stated, we welcome the announcement by the UN Secretary General of a review of peace operations, including both peacekeeping operations and special political missions, as both timely and necessary. The European Union is prepared to contribute to this reflection.

Mr. Chair,

An important principle that underlies effective conflict prevention and resolution is the need for an inclusive approach. We need to ensure equal and full participation of women in peace processes and conflict prevention strategies. The full implementation of UNSCR 1325 and related women, peace and security resolutions is crucial in this regard.

Mr. Chair,

We recognise the importance of a system-wide, flexible and context-specific approach. In May this year, the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council agreed to a Comprehensive Approach to conflict and crisis which places a particular emphasis on the need for conflict prevention.

We agree with the Secretary-General’s assessment of the importance of close partnership with regional and subregional organizations as a key element of success for special political missions. We have welcomed and actively supported the efforts of UN and regional organisations to reinforce their cooperation, coherence and complementarity. From strengthening conflict prevention capacities, including on mediation and early warning, to long term partnerships in development, economic cooperation, trade and other instruments, the European Union remains a committed partner.

Finally, Mr. Chair, we wish to take this opportunity to thank Finland and Mexico for the draft resolution that will be introduced under this agenda item and assure partners of our constructive engagement and full support for a successful and consensual conclusion of the consultations process.

I thank you.

* The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.

  • Ref: EUUN14-184EN
  • EU source: European Union
  • UN forum: Fourth Committee - Special Political and Decolonization Committee
  • Date: 03/11/2014

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