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Statement by Minna-Liina Lind, Deputy Permanent Representative of Estonia to the UN General Assembly Debate on the Report of the Peacebuilding Commission on its Eleventh Session and on the Report of the SG on the Peacebuilding Fund, 24 May 2018

24.05.2018


Mr. President,

Thank you for convening the meeting on the Annual Report of the Peacebuilding Commission and the Peacebuilding Fund. As it takes place just a month after the High Level Meeting, it also gives an opportunity to follow up its considerations.

Pursuant to the 2016 twin resolutions, the High-Level Meeting convened this April represented our joint efforts to strengthen the United Nation`s work on peacebuilding and sustaining peace. We were encouraged by the notion of shared understanding on sustaining peace expressed by the high-level participants at the meeting, taking forward the implementation of the concept.

Estonia supports the vision of the Secretary-General as presented in his report on peacebuilding and sustaining peace that is in line with the Agenda 2030. Conflict prevention should be at the heart of the UN´s work and peace will only be sustainable if we make progress in development and address the root causes of conflict. Therefore, democratic governance, rule of law, protection of human rights, and transparent, accountable state institutions are essential for achieving stability and peace. Furthermore, gender aspect and empowerment of women and youth are critical for sustaining peace.

It is clear that UN system needs to work in a more flexible, integrated and coordinated manner both at country level and at headquarters, as fragmentation undermines the UN´s ability to assist the Members States. We therefore strongly support the efforts to link the reform of the UN´s Peace and Security architecture with the reform of the UN Development System and Management.

Mr President,

We welcome the comprehensive report of the Peacebuilding Commission´s eleventh session, including the summary of the implementation of the recommendations contained in the resolutions. We would like to commend Ambassador Cho Tae-yul, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea for his leadership and work as the Chair of the Commission last year.

The Peacebuilding Commission is a central actor in the United Nations system, especially through its convening power. Estonia had the privilege of being a member of the Peacebuilding Commission last year and we were pleased to see its involving impactful role. Estonia welcomes the broader focus of the Commission, including regional approach – like Sahel and Great Lakes, sharing countries´ experience, addressing cross cutting issues and fostering partnerships between the UN and regional and sub-regional organisations, and the international financial institutions. We are of the opinion that the PBC´s bridging and advisory role with the General Assembly, Security Council and ECOSOC could be further improved. We also support strengthening the Peacebuilding Support Office in integrating cross-pillar action at the UN.

However, in promoting the sustaining peace agenda, we cannot only rely on the UN system as it is the primarily responsibility of the Member States. The governments need to have the will to put in practice adequate policies - Sustainable Development Goals being one of the powerful toolboxes.

The role of the Member States becomes especially critical in investing more in conflict prevention and peacekeeping. Predictable funding is essential for supporting countries in transition and prone to conflicts. Estonia has contributed to the Peacebuilding Fund already for five years and we believe that the Fund has shown remarkable results, it is an effective instrument for providing fast, catalytic and flexible assistance.

Mr President,

The consensual adoption of the resolution on peacebuilding and sustaining peace at the High Level Meeting in April was a re-confirmation of the Member States’ commitment to this agenda. The Estonian Prime Minister also affirmed at the meeting that Estonia remains dedicated to working towards maintaining peace and supporting the agenda. We look forward to keeping this momentum and to the reports that the Secretary General will present to the Member States for further building on the implementation efforts of Member States and the UN system.

Thank you.

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