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India’s National Statement delivered by Secretary (West) at the Peacebuilding Commission Ministerial Meeting

September 23, 2023

Thank You Chair.

Conflicts are now more fragmented – technologically equipped non-state actors, including armed militias, terrorists, and organized criminal groups with external support have made the conflict theatre much more complex and volatile.

Building and sustaining peace, therefore is proving to be more complex, than ending the conflict.

Countries, particularly in Africa, are increasingly asking UN to exit conflict zones. This does not augur well.Clearly, UN’s peacekeeping landscape has changed.

In this context, allow me Chair, to make the following points:

First, while the New Agenda for Peace captures some of the elements of the increasingly complex and inter-linked facets of peacebuilding, Peacebuilding Commission has no direct conflict prevention mandate.

Second, India recognizes that at the end of the day national Governments are the ones driving, building and sustaining peace in their territories. Solutions imposed from outside are destined to fail.

Third, countries in conflict settings need to be given space, time and resources to nurture such governance impulses and structures.

Fourth, institution building in conflicted countries is important and needs adequate attention. In this process, Women, Peace and Security agenda should also be strongly supported.

Fifth, growth of terrorism, particularly in Africa, has exposed the gaps in mandate between peacekeeping and peace building.

Sixth, Peacebuilding should benefit from people-centric technological advances.

Seventh, we recognize the fact that climate change may exacerbate instability, but it is also irrefutable that violent conflicts, for the foreseeable future, will continue to be driven by socio-economic conditions and governance rather than by climate change.

Eighth, there is absolutely no doubt that we need adequate, sustainable and flexible financing for peacebuilding.

Ninth, the PBC should be consulted more actively by decision making bodies, such as the Security Council when formulating aspects where peacebuilding and peacekeeping link and overlap.

Tenth, it is important to set clear benchmarks and criteria for an exit strategy while formulating peace keeping mandates.

And finally, and most importantly, resourcing redundant peacekeeping missions with the same strength and purpose in the face of other real and pressing live situations of conflict is neither desirable, nor called for. An overall review of existing peacekeeping missions must aim to weed out redundancies.

Mr Chair,

In the realm of peacebuilding, India has consistently played a constructive and substantial role through our extensive development partnerships with countries in the Global South. The cumulative value of India's developmental projects with the Global South now exceeds US$ 40 billion, encompassing capacity-building training programs well over the last decade.

Excellencies, with this human-centric approach, India remains committed to being a steadfast ally and catalyst in all peacebuilding endeavours.

I thank you.

New York
September 22, 2023

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