What Ayorkor Botchwey said at the UN Security Council meeting on Thursday

Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, participated in the United Nations Security Council High-Level Open Debate on “Integrating Effective Resilience Building into Peace Operations for a lasting peace”.

You will find attached the declaration of Ms. Ayorkor Botchwey

Mr Secretary General,
Excellencies,

1. Allow me first of all to thank all the ministers and officials who have traveled from their capitals and indeed all Council members and non-Council members for your participation in today’s open debate .

2. I thank you, Mr. Secretary-General, for your important statement and welcome the clarity of your views on how best to integrate effective resilience building into peace operations for sustainable peace.

3. I also thank Assistant Secretary General, Martha Akyaa Pobee, Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security of the African Union Commission, Ms. Mary Robinson, former Chairperson of the Ireland and Chair of the Elders, and Ms. Karin Landgren, Executive Director of the Security Council Report for their informative and insightful briefings.

Excellencies,

4. As a Council, we have primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. Finding the right balance between the instruments we deploy for peace operations is essential to ensure that the peace we seek is maintained around the world.

5. The link between peace and development is obvious to all. The latest SDG report noted that cascading and interrelated crises seriously jeopardize the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as peace and security and the very survival of humanity. We agree with your response to query 3, Mr Secretary General: “We must rise higher to save the Sustainable Development Goals – and stay true to our promise of a world of peace, dignity and prosperity on a healthy planet”.

6. We therefore need to ensure funding across the continuum of peace if we are to succeed in resolving the protracted and complex conflicts we currently face. In addition, there is a need for a strong ecosystem to operationalize the “three-pillar nexus” and promote the transformative, prevention-focused and conflict-sensitive responses needed to accelerate action towards achieving the 2030 Agenda. .

7. Ghana is concerned that resources devoted to programmatic interventions of peacekeeping missions are dwarfed by those devoted to kinetic operations. Likewise, no member of this Council has forgotten that the peacebuilding support budget represents a smaller share of the resources available for peace operations. The 2015 High-Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations (the HIPPO Report) noted that “changes in conflict can quickly overwhelm the response capacity of United Nations peace operations”. This sustainability gap now threatens ongoing peacekeeping missions as a number of host nations of peacekeeping missions turn to outside force interventions, while
limit in time the mandate of peacekeeping missions.

8. We are even more concerned that poor countries bear the burden of dealing with the socio-economic and political complexities and challenges that drive the rise of terrorism and violent extremism, while bearing the cost of operations kinetics needed to defeat the terrorists. Integrating effective resilience building into peace operations must be a central concern of this Council, if we are to remain a credible guarantor of peace and security in the world. If evidence were needed, we need look no further than the
Sahel, where the stability and viability of states are tested daily, with violence and death increasing with each attack.

But the Sahel, which according to the latest edition of the Global Terrorism Index has seen 35% of terrorism-related deaths worldwide, is not the only region where the Council’s traditional response falls short of the nature of the threat.

Excellencies,

9. It is clear that sustainable peace today requires that, while we consider ways to further reform peacekeeping to ensure adequate programmatic funding, we also consider ways to make the successes of operations kinetic against more sustainable terrorists by addressing the underlying factors that exacerbate the terrorist threat.

In the Sahel and coastal West Africa, the impacts of climate change, including displacement and food insecurity, poverty and exclusion, low levels of education, youth unemployment, among others , create fertile ground for radicalization and recruitment.

10. Addressing the growing gap between citizen expectations and the ability of the state to deliver public goods and maintain state presence is as much a security issue as it is a development resilience challenge . This Council cannot ignore this concern for international peace and security.

Excellencies,

11. Allow me to highlight the following as a means of integrating effective resilience into peace operations for sustainable peace:

12. First, it is urgent and paramount that United Nations peace operations be reconfigured to ensure a situationally determined balance between kinetic actions aimed at restoring peace, including eradicating terrorism, and non-kinetic actions to achieve peace. tackling the underlying causes of conflict.

We hope that this debate will lead to a process that will transform the peace operation model to meet today’s conditions.

13. Second, the Council must live up to its mandate and address the critical recommendation of the HiPPO report on the need for new modalities to deal with terrorism and violent extremism, emerging threats to peace and security in our world today. Threats to international peace and security continue to multiply every day, every day that no action is taken.

14. Third, we must operationalize the Council’s programs on youth and women, making them essential pillars of United Nations support for
building resilience to defeat terrorism and violent extremism. Women and youth face particular challenges in their communities as they are disproportionately affected by conflict and violence. According to UNICEF, 3 out of 10 young people, many of them girls, are out of school in countries affected by conflict.

15. Finally, while the different organs of the United Nations have distinct responsibilities that impact on the peace-development nexus, in practice, the sum of our efforts is not enough to create the conditions in which peace thrives. It is important that this Council encourages coherent action across the United Nations system towards the agenda of building resilience for lasting peace. The collective input of the system must be an integral part of how mandates are adopted and executed.

Excellencies,

16. In conclusion, our ability to deliver lasting peace and security relies on our ability to understand and address the underlying conditions of conflict, as much as our ability to manage conflict.

I thank you.