23 February 2011
Statement by H.E. Mr. Eshagh Al Habib
Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative
of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations
at the general debate of the 2011
substantive session of the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations /C-34
(New York – 23 February 2011)
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
I would like to begin by extending my congratulations to you and other members of the Bureau on your election and wish you all success in your endeavor to guide the current session of the Special Committee towards a fruitful outcome.
I also would like to thank Under-Secretary-General of the Department of Peacekeeping operations, Mr. Alain Le Roy, and Under-Secretary-General of the Department of Field Support, Ms. Susana Malcorra, for their informative and useful briefings.
My delegation associates itself with the statement made by Morocco on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement.
United Nations peacekeeping operations have become increasingly more complex and difficult undertakings. It is unprecedented in terms of the number of the personnel on the ground, the diversity of mandated task and complexity of the situation of the each peacekeeping mission. Meanwhile, international expectations are high for this UN endeavour as an important and effective tool to contribute to global peace and security. In this regard, the special committee on peacekeeping operations, as the sole policy making body in the United Nations on all operational aspects of peacekeeping, has a very important role to play.
We believe that the establishment of any peacekeeping operation or extension of mandate of existing operations should strictly observe the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and basic principles of peacekeeping, namely: the consent of the parties, the non-use of force except in self-defence and impartiality. Observing these fundamental principles would certainly maintain the nations’ confidence and trust in United Nations activities with direct and important effect on their sovereignty and independence. There is no doubt that any deviation from the said principles would undermine the image of the UN peacekeeping and erode the universal support of the UN peacekeeping. In this regard, the respect for the principles of sovereign equality, political independence, territorial integrity of all States and non-intervention in matters that are essentially within their domestic jurisdiction should also be upheld.
While confirming the necessity of adopting new concepts and ideas to address emerging needs and demands emanating from complex and multidimensional nature of peacekeeping operations, we believe that they should be consistent with principles, guidelines and terminology governing peacekeeping, agreed upon in relevant inter-governmental negotiating processes. Moreover, due attention should be paid to the consistency in the use of this agreed terminology. In this connection, my delegation reiterates that the General Assembly and the Special Committee are the most competence fora to discuss issues and policies related to the UN peacekeeping operations, and to review comprehensively the whole question of UNPKOs in all their aspects.
I would like to underline that UN peacekeeping operation should be provided from the outset with political support, full and optimal human, financial and logistical resources, and clearly defined and achievable mandates and exit strategies. We deeply believe that the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations should not be used as a substitute for those efforts addressing the root causes of conflict, which should be dealt with in a coherent, well-planned, coordinated and comprehensive manner channelized in respective social, economic and developmental bodies.
To ensure the success of peacekeeping mandates, all measures should be taken to establish communications with all respective parties, especially TCCs. We encourage the Secretariat to continue its efforts to increase the level of its interaction with all stakeholders, especially TCCs, with a view to increase the effectiveness of UN peacekeeping operations. In this respect, while commending the Secretariat’s valuable efforts to ensure proper representation of the TCCs in DPKO and DFS at all levels both at the Headquarters and in the fields, we hope that this policy continues in the future.
We share this view with many other delegations that peacekeeping and peacebuilding are interrelated and should not be perceived separately. Early peacebuilding is critical, and must be incorporated during the early phases of peacekeeping planning. In order to have a seamless transition between peacekeeping and peacebuilding, it is necessary to lay down the basis for lasting socio-economic development. In this regard, creation of locally-owned capacity building processes in order to enable host nations to perform key security and governance functions independently is of a grate importance.
We reiterate that Protection of Civilians is the primary responsibility of the Host Country and that the successful conduct of the task relating to the protection of civilians, where a United Nations mandate exist, requires a holistic approach encompassing the provisions of timely and adequate resources, logistical support and the required training, as well as well defined and achievable mandates. We emphasize that Protection of Civilian should not be used as a pretext for military intervention by the United Nations in conflicts.
My delegation, along with other member states of the Non-Aligned Movement, would like to stress that the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security rests with the UN, and that the role of regional arrangements and agencies in that regard should be in accordance with Chapter VIII of the Charter of the United Nations. We reiterate that regional arrangements should not in any way involve in peacekeeping operations as a substitute for the United Nations, circumvent full application of the UN guiding principles on peacekeeping, or disengage the Organization of its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security.
In conclusion, I wish to remind that Peacekeeping has been termed the flagship activity of the United Nations for decades. It is upon us to continue collectively fulfilling this responsibility with a view to help the people of the troubled regions of the world to decide their own future based on their political and cultural priorities.