Thank you for giving the floor to the European Union.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia*, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia* and Montenegro*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, as well as Ukraine align themselves with this declaration.
Supporting countries emerging from conflict is a moral obligation and the responsibility of the international community. We cannot fail to meet this challenge.
The United Nations, with its global legitimacy and broad range of instruments, has a key role to play in helping to build lasting peace.
This is why the European Union has actively engaged in the Peace Building Commission since its creation six years ago.
During the past months, we have taken important steps to strengthen our support to countries emerging from conflict. We have had important debates and concrete initiatives are underway to enhance the coherence and the effectiveness of our engagement.
In the same vein, the PBC has continue to raise the attention of the international community on the countries on the PBC’s agenda and has proved its added value in different situations: the supportive political role played by the PBC during the elections in Burundi and its active role in Sierra Leone aimed at fostering job creation and economic opportunities are good examples.
The European Union is also encouraged to see that two new countries (Liberia and Guinea) have decided to put themselves forward for referral.
Moreover, two very important reviews have been carried out.
? Civilian Capacity Review
The first, pertaining to the deployment of Civilian Capacity, and conducted by the Senior Advisory Group chaired by Jean Marie Guéhenno, is a key contribution towards a more flexible, demand-driven and better qualified civilian expertise to be deployed in a timely fashion on the ground aimed at helping national actors build their own capacity in peacebuilding related areas.
The EU attaches great importance to the follow-up of the recommendations and we hope the review will result in increased global availability of civilian experts for post-conflict situations and seamless interoperability of civilian capacities within the UN system and between the UN and other key players, such as regional organisations.
Another important point for us is the enhanced deployment of female civilian experts in the spirit of Security Council resolution 1325 and the Secretary-General’s action plan on ensuring women’s participation in peacebuilding. Post-conflict institutions cannot be effective unless they are in accordance with gender equality.
The PBC should play an important role in championing the review.
? PBC 2010 Review
The second one is the 2010 PBC review carried out by the three co-facilitators.
The result is a very thoughtful assessment of the PBC architecture, which brought forward numerous ambitious recommendations aimed at increasing the impact of this body.
The time to look ahead is now.
We need to capitalise on the political momentum generated by the 2010 PBC Review process through utilizing all of the means at our disposal to face the numerous challenges ahead.
Challenges varying from the electoral processes in the Central African Republic and Liberia, the Reform of the Security Sector in Guinea-Bissau and Guinea Conakry and the promotion of youth opportunities in Sierra Leone. Just to mention a few examples.
In all these scenarios, the PBC can, and must, make the difference.
In order to deliver, we need to redouble our efforts and aim a more relevant PBC, underpinned with genuine national ownership across the board. Hence, improvements have to be made in the field and headquarters, by:
– Generation of better analysis
– Sharper focus on the key bottlenecks to peace in a specific country
– Establishment of mutual commitments between the Government and international community aimed at addressing these difficulties.
All this will put the PBC in much better standing for achieving results.
So too will the proposals for the PBC to take a flexible approach to its country work.
To conclude Mr President,
As a strong believer in peacebuilding, the European Union stands ready to intensify its efforts and enable the UN peacebuilding architecture to live up to the expectations which accompanied its establishment.
* Croatia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Montenegro continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.