Norway welcomes the report of the Secretary General on Peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict.
We fully agree with the report’s emphasis on national ownership and the need to meet countries’ demand for strengthening of national and local capacities.
The role of the UN should be to coordinate international efforts. To fulfil this role the UN country team must be able to draw on staff quickly and assign them to appropriate positions without having to engage in time consuming administrative rules and regulations. Norway therefore supports the Secretary General’s recommendation to member states to approve reform packages on human resources. We also welcome the Secretary General’s initiative to create a senior-level mechanism at UN Headquarters that will ensure that the right leadership and support teams are in place as early as possible.
Despite the comprehensiveness of the report, Norway would have liked to see the roles of the various sectors described more fully in the report. We believe that undefined responsibility leads to a lack of accountability. We trust that the work in this area will continue in the time ahead.
Although significant progress has been made in comprehensive strategic planning, there still remain serious challenges when trying to coordinate security, political, humanitarian and development efforts in post-conflict situations. The report addresses this fundamental dilemma by stating that the senior UN leadership team has the responsibility to ensure strategic coordination and linkages between the relevant frameworks. All parts of the UN system need to improve dialogue and coordination, and they should be provided with incentives to avoid duplication, inefficiency and delays in the commencement of operations. Member States need to take a lead role in requesting and supporting these improvements.
In this regard Norway commends the steps taken to improve the working relationship between the UN and the World Bank with the “Partnership Framework Agreement”. This is of vital importance and will hopefully improve both the strategic coordination and the collective impact of the UN and the World Bank efforts on the ground.
The Peacebuilding Commission should play a more central role in ensuring that the international community is a more reliable partner to governments of post-conflict countries. The Peacebuilding Commission’s role in promoting greater coherence and synergies between the different parts of the UN system and other partners should be strengthened. It is essential that adequate resources are made available to the Peacebuilding Support Office in order to support the Peacebuilding Commission and administer the Peacebuilding Fund in an efficient manner.
As stated in the report, the Peacebuilding Fund should strengthen its focus on core peace building activities. Thus far, the Peacebuilding Fund has largely supported later stage peace building activities rather than providing a rapid, flexible and risk tolerant approach directed at the immediate aftermath of conflict.
The Secretary General’s report sets out an agenda to strengthen the UN response in the immediate aftermath of conflict and the facilitation of an earlier, more coherent response from the wider international community. Successful implementation of the agenda requires political will, prioritisation, alignment and funding from Member States. Let me reiterate Norway’s commitment to the reinforcement of the existing peace building mechanisms and our support to the recommendations stated in the report.
I thank you, Mr. President