Swedish statement at the UN Security Council Briefing on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace

National statement delivered by Ambassador Irina Schoulgin Nyoni on behalf of Sweden at the United Nations Security Council Briefing on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace: Post-conflict Reconstruction and Peace, Security and Stability, 5 December 2018, New York.

Thank you, Mr. President,

Je voudrais vous remercier pour avoir organisé ce débat sur la reconstruction après conflit. I would also like to thank the Secretary General, as well as the Chairperson of the AU Commission, for your insightful remarks.

Mr. President, 

Let me start by commending the government and people of Côte d'Ivoire for their resilience and efforts to restore peace and stability and boost economic growth. Positive stories like yours are rare and far apart, and serve as an important source of hope and guidance to many. Your experiences have also been valuable for our work in the Security Council, including in our joint work regarding the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel, UNOWAS.

Mr. President,

Post-conflict reconstruction and transition can only be successful in the context of broader political, economic and social reforms. As this debate has illustrated, a multitude of challenges need to addressed, including the effects of sexual and gender based violence. The resulting trauma, stigma, poverty and poor health – can echo across generations. In response,  socio-economic integration support to restore community cohesion is necessary. Ensuring justice and reparation for victims remains crucial across the board and remains a key component of restoring the fabric of society.

The foundation for such restoration and reconstruction is laid by peacekeeping operations. Formulating appropriate mandates, with  comprehensive political solutions at their core, is key. An exit plan, anchored in national development planning processes to ensure national ownership, need to be formulated already at an early stage of the mission. Integrated work across the UN system is also needed to assure that transitions are just that – a transition and not a termination of one and possibly the beginning of another kind of support to reconstruction. 

Predictable and coherent peacebuilding during and after transitions, including how we finance the system, is another vital part of a comprehensive approach. The Peacebuilding Fund is an important tool in this regard. The commitment as formulated in Action for Peacekeeping to support the UN agencies, funds and programmes is also critical. 

As chair of the Peacebuilding Commission’s Liberia configuration, Sweden had the honor to work with Liberia through its transition. As the peacekeeping mission withdrew, the PBC worked to support and enhance the national ownership as well as to sustain international attention including by mobilizing financial and political support. Many important lessons were learned from the transition in Liberia and the PBC can now also function as an important platform to share these. 

Mr. President, 

Peace and security cannot be seen in isolation, but are closely connected to socio-economic factors that drive both resilience and fragility. The UN and World Bank Report Pathways to Peace identifies exclusion, inequality and power imbalances as principal causes of conflict and violence. In many countries, growing inequalities fuel social unrest and impede sustainable economic growth. Consequently, policies that strive towards equality, in its broadest sense, creates more peaceful societies. 

And as the economy starts to grow again in the aftermath of conflict, it is not least important to pay attention to rising economic inequalities. Sweden has introduced the multi-stakeholder initiative Global Deal for Decent Work and Inclusive Growth developed in cooperation with OECD and ILO. It builds on the notion that a well-functioning social dialogue and sound industrial relations are key elements for coming to terms with a wide array of societal challenges by forging trust and paving the way for inclusive growth. 

As part of recovering there will at some stage also be  important to gain capacity to participate in the international trading system in a free, equitable and sustainable way. To eradicate poverty and promote sustainable and inclusive growth and development we need more trade, not less.

Mr. President, 

As the Secretary General just pointed out, we need a holistic approach. The 2030 Agenda – as well as the AU’s Agenda 2063 – and the sustaining peace resolutions offer the frameworks for long-term approaches to building societal resilience and tackling root causes of conflict. It is all there, we know what needs to be done.

In line with the sustaining peace resolutions, we must move away from the sequential approach to conflict that often results in silos of conflict prevention, humanitarian action, human rights, peacekeeping, peacebuilding, rule of law, and development. And, of course, the WPS agenda is not an “add on”, but must be universally integrated if sustained peace is to be achieved. 

We thank the Secretary General for constantly reminding us how critical it is to  link the three fundamental pillars of the UN; peace and security, development and human rights . 

To end a bit where I started, with the Peacebuilding Commission. The PBC is well placed to contribute to this holistic approach, and should be better utilized. The PBC is a key adviser to the Security Council when it comes to sustaining peace. The Commission can convene actors for broader peacebuilding perspectives spanning across the peace and security, human rights and development nexus. It can also assist with regional approaches, work to strengthen national ownership and develop partnerships for innovative solutions. 

In its current role as coordinator between the Security Council and the Peacebuilding Commission, Sweden has worked to deepen the dialogue between the two bodies. The PBC has made important progress on targeted context-specific advice and engagement in transitions and mandate discussions. We believe that there is broad support for consolidating these gains and solidifying the cooperation between the Council and the PBC. In order to capture best practices and further deepen the dialogue between the Security Council and the PBC, Sweden has presented a draft Presidential Statement on the Commission’s support to the Council’s efforts on sustaining peace. We look forward to Council Members’ constructive engagement on this initiative. 

Sweden will continue our cooperation for successful transitions and reconstruction and by doing so, also remains committed to the sustaining peace agenda. 

Je vous remercie, Monsieur le Président.

Contact

Lisa Laskaridis
Head of Press and Communication, Permanent Mission of Sweden to the UN
Phone +1 212 583 2543
Mobile +1 917 239 0941
email to Lisa Laskaridis