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Security Council – Open Debate on “Collective Action to Improve UN Peacekeeping Operations”

National Statement delivered by Italy at the Security Council Open Debate on “Collective Action to Improve UN Peacekeeping Operations: Supporting greater impact and performance in today’s complex and high-risk environments”. —

Madame President,

I would like to add few additional comments in my national capacity, underlining that Italy aligns itself also with the statement that will be made by the European Union and with the one pronounced on behalf of the Group of Friends of Women, Peace and Security.

Madame President,

Let me emphasize once again that protection of civilians, conflict prevention, peacebuilding and sustaining peace have become the fundaments of peacekeeping today and this is the way forward. The Kigali Principles and the Vancouver principles should be fully implemented by peace operations, especially as regard child protection.

We also encourage the Secretary-General to advance his vision of a “peace continuum”, where our primary goal must be the quest for political solutions.

And we support an enhanced role of the Peace Building Support Office to integrate peace and security with development and human rights. In this respect, the Police component in our view can play a crucial role in facilitating the transition from peacekeeping to more robust development assistance and peacebuilding, as recalled in SC Resolution 2382 that we helped to adopt last year.

Madame President,

AMISOM and G5 Sahel Force are successful examples of cooperation with regional organizations. They also confirm that we need enhanced strategic cooperation between the UN and the AU to ensure effective and cost-efficient peace operations and strengthen African capabilities in this field. We are in favor of the use of UN-assessed contributions for African-led peace operations, provided that appropriate standards in terms of troop quality, financial transparency, human rights compliance, conduct and discipline are met.

Madame President,

Italy is one of the most generous contributors to the peacekeeping budget and the first contributor of Blue Helmets in the Western Group. As a Troop Contributing Country we are very concerned about the safety and security of Blue Helmets. We consider the Santos Cruz Report and its Action Plan, as well as the independent mission reviews, timely and opportune measures.

Technology is also key to increase the safety and security of peacekeepers. The use of UAVs in MONUSCO has provided enhanced situational awareness to the mission and paid a fundamental role for the safety and security of the peacekeepers as well as for the protection of civilians and humanitarian actors.
Training is also crucial to the effective implementation of mandates. Peacekeepers need specific training in order to fulfill their job better. That is why the pledges for peacekeeping Italy has made this year include a series of training courses developed by the Security Force Assistance Centre and the Centre of Excellence for Stability Police Units – COESPU in Vicenza.

Madame President,

let me also recall the creation by Italy and Bangladesh of the Group of Friends on the management of the environmental impact of field missions throughout their lifecycle.

We should not forget logistics. The capacity for operations to deliver and accomplish their mandates is closely related to the swiftness of deployment and to the operational effectiveness of field missions. Italy provides full support to the UN Global Service Center, located in Brindisi, is a fundamental hub providing logistic support to peacekeeping missions around the world.

Finally, Madame President,

A more inclusive involvement of Troop Contributing Countries and Police Contributing Countries when reviewing mandates by the Security Council is key to revive a sense of shared responsibility. The Security Council should always remember to give due consideration to the views of these Countries, whose men and women are actually risking their lives on the ground, and to whom I pay the most respectful tribute, in particular, to those who have lost their lives over the years.