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Discorso pronunciato dall’Ambasciatore Sebastiano Cardi, Rappresentante Permanente dell’Italia presso le Nazioni Unite, al dibattito in Consiglio di Sicurezza sulla Protezione dei civili nelle Operazioni di pace

Monsieur le President,

Monsieur le President,

L’Italie remercie la France pour avoir organisé ce débat ouvert qui, avec le rapport du Secrétaire General, nous pousse à réfléchir sur le rôle des opérations de maintien de la paix sous le prisme de la protection des populations. Je remercie le Secrétaire General, le Président de la République Centrafricaine et le Président du Comité International des Croix Rouges pour leurs intervention. L’Italie s’aligne aux déclarations de l’Union Européenne et du Groupe des Amis de la Protection des Civils et voudrait ajouter le considérations suivantes a’ titre national.

Significant progress has already been achieved, including the Safe School Declaration, endorsed by Italy; the adoption last November of a presidential statement reaffirming the Council’s commitment to this cause; the commitments subscribed at the recent World Humanitarian Summit; the unanimous adoption, with large number of cosponsors including Italy, of resolution 2286 on healthcare in armed conflict and the protection of medical personnel and facilities.

More can still be done on increasing the protection of civilians. In particular, the HIPPO report and the Global review on Women, Peace and Security provide us with a set of recommendations to strengthen peace operations and make them more effective in reaching the ultimate goal of protecting civilians. While recognizing the importance of traditional principles (primary responsibility of the State, impartiality, consent, non-use of force), we must not forget the primacy of protecting civilians in peace operations.

Italy is among the inaugural subscribers of the Kigali Principles,establishing that effective protection requires properly trained troops, adequate equipment and strong political commitment. We are confident that a greater number of troop and police contributing countries will subscribe to these principles and implement them. Their mention in the final report of the C34 Committee is a significant first step. Italy also supports the ACT Code of Conduct and the French/Mexican Initiative on veto restraint.

As the top WEOG TCC, Italy believes that effective protection of civilians requires clear, sequenced and prioritized mandates, properly trained troops, adequate equipment, and a reinforced role of regional organizations.


1. Training. Appropriate training is key and Italy will continue to do its part, redoubling efforts in training and capacity building for peace and justice operators. Since 2005, through the Center of Excellence for Stability Police Units, we have trained more than 9,000 units of police personnel, many of whom are deployed in operations in Africa. The protection of civilian lies at the very heart of our training.

2. Sexual Exploitation and Abuse. Our training includes courses on the protection and promotion of human rights and International Humanitarian Law and on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence and encompasses thorough and individual programs on appropriate conduct and local customs, while ensuring the firmest stance against abuses. We believe the zero-tolerance policy must be met with tailored training to reach a zero-case reality and protect the credibility and trust of the missions. In this area accountability should be strengthened, appropriate domestic prosecution must take place and the UN should encourage States to cooperate.

3. Adequate equipment. Due consideration must be given to the need to properly equip missions, also by adopting available technological solutions, such as the use of unmanned aerial vehicles that have proved on some occasions to be key in saving civilian lives.

4. Strengthening the gender perspective of peace operations. It is key to effective protection and can be achieved both by increasing the overall number of women serving in peace operations and – during the mission – by reaching out to women and girls in local communities, engaging them as actors of peace and prevention.

5. Regional Organizations. In line with our overall view that regional and sub-regional organizations are ideally placed to contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security, we will continue to work to strengthen the relation between the UN and regional organizations, especially the African Union, that have been reinforcing their capability in dealing with crisis.

6. My last point is on prevention.It is the right choice and the smart choice and the best way to guarantee an effective protection of civilians. I thus stress the importance of early warning mechanisms, such as the Framework of Analysis for Atrocity Crimes and the Human Rights Up Front initiative.

Monsieur le Président,

Dans le couloirs des Nations Unies, on parle souvent de « la voie italienne au maintien de la paix ». C’est une voie qui unit tradition, innovation et formation et, surtout, qui met toujours les personnes et les communautés locales au centre de l’action de la mission. C’est cette voie que nous nous engageons à soutenir. Merci.