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Statement by Mathias Licharz, Minister Plenipotentiary of the Federal Republic of Germany to the United Nations, in the Open Debate on “Cooperation between the UN and regional and subregional organisations: the role of states, regional arrangements and UN in the prevention and resolution of conflicts” - December 6, 2018

07.12.2018 - Rede

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Mr. President, Excellencies, I would like to thank the Chair for initiating today’s debate and the briefers for their informative statements. 
To begin, Germany would like to commend Côte d’Ivoire. As recently as last year, it was still the host country of a UN peacekeeping mission. Today, it is a member of the Security Council. We can learn a great deal from this success story, and we appreciate the lessons it has shared with us. 

Germany aligns itself with the statement delivered by the European Union. 

Let me make two brief points. 

First, Germany strongly supports cooperation between the UN and regional and sub-regional organizations in prevention, conflict resolution and peacebuilding. Such cooperation, if complementary and coordinated, enables more effective implementation of mandates and thus better results on the ground.

The UN-EU Action Plan for Crisis Management and Peace Operations, the Steering Committee on Crisis Management and the AU-UN Joint Partnership Framework are excellent examples of successful cooperation. 

The international community should invest more in such cooperation by building capacities and networks to sustain peace.

For instance, Germany co-hosted a Conference on the Lake Chad region in September with Nigeria, Norway and the UN. The event focused on the humanitarian-development-peace-nexus and implementing UNSC Resolution 2349. 

The Lake Chad Region’s Governors Forum is another successful example of the cross-border regional cooperation called for under Resolution 2349. Germany welcomes that the Lake Chad countries have demonstrated ownership by adopting a stabilization strategy developed by the Lake Chad Basin Commission and the African Union.

Germany provides assistance to African partners for early warning, prevention and mediation activities. We are an active partner in mediation efforts conducted under the umbrella of the AU, for example in Sudan and South Sudan. We are proud to support the AU’s Mediation Support Unit which will increase the efficiency of African-led mediation efforts. 

The EU and AU have also shown great leadership in putting the Women Peace and Security Agenda into action. Germany is proud to support these efforts, especially the African Women Leaders Network. We are convinced that women’s access to political leadership, in particular their participation in peace processes, leads to a more sustainable peace.

Second, we need to strive for international and regional responses that are context specific, sequenced and well-coordinated. 

Here, the UN Security Council must take a more comprehensive approach to crisis management to prevent conflict relapse. Too often, we have witnessed conflicts re-escalate following the conclusion of peacekeeping missions. 

When devising its strategy for a specific conflict, the SC must develop realistic, politically sound and sufficiently financed mandates as well as transition strategies which include prevention, stabilization and peacebuilding measures for all phases of the conflict, namely before, during and after missions are mandated, deployed and closed. Regional organizations and TCCs can offer their expertise to help develop such mandates and ensure a coordinated international response from the start. This will also enable smooth transitions. 

Regional and sub-regional organizations have unique skill sets and play a paramount role in implementing Security Council mandates. However, any contribution should be subject to clear performance standards and adhere to human rights and humanitarian law. The OHCHR should play a significant role in developing a HR framework for all peace operations.

Germany is committed to working with all Council members and the broader UN community to make transitions from peacekeeping to peacebuilding work. This also reflects the strong shared commitment to the Action for Peacekeeping. 

On the issue of Peacebuilding, it is important to make better use of the Peacebuilding Commission: Germany is currently Vice-Chair of the PBC and one of the largest contributors to conflict prevention and peacebuilding within the UN system. We should encourage States which are seeking assistance with peacebuilding efforts to come to the Peacebuilding Commission. We should also encourage others to contribute to the “quantum leap” in the Peacebuilding Fund and jointly make better use of the PBC’s convening and advisory role.

To conclude, cooperation between the UN and regional and subregional organizations/arrangements enables the sharing of responsibilities, based on the comparative strengths of each. This leads to complementarity and avoids competition! 

Germany remains committed to supporting regional and sub-regional organizations, and their cooperation with the UN, and we will continue to promote a holistic and coordinated approach to “sustaining peace.” As Member States, we cannot afford to waste scarce resources or lack coherence. We should be seeking synergies and work closely together to sustain peace.

I thank you, Mr. President.

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