General Assembly General Assembly

High Level Meeting on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace

United Nations General Assembly



Ambassador. A. Gitesh Sarma, Additional Secretary

Ministry of External Affairs

24-25 April 2018


Mr. President,


            Thank you for arranging this discussion on an issue that is of high priority.


2.         Building peace and prosperity for all remains a major objective for the international community. The United Nations has a significant role to play in helping countries achieve these goals collectively in our mutual interest. 


3.         The United Nations itself was born in the aftermath of a conflict of a global scale. The discourse about peace, therefore, has remained high on its agenda. Our understanding about why conflicts continue to persist around the world has also increased over time.


4.         While Peacekeeping, the flagship activity of the UN, has been largely successful in containing inter-state conflict situations, its limitations in tackling chronic intra-state armed conflict situations,notwithstanding large-scale deployment of troops and other resources, are obvious. 


5.         The concept of Peacebuilding, that expanded the focus to post conflict situations and led to the establishment of UN’s Peacebuilding architecture around a decade ago, is struggling due to lack of adequate funding that betrays a lack of genuine political will.


6.         The concept has evolved further with the adoption of the landmark 2016 resolutions on Sustaining Peace by the Security Council and the General Assembly. Sustaining peace requires a comprehensive understanding of the related challenges and availing of opportunities through serious international efforts towards ensuring greater peace and prosperity. This is also in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.


Mr. President,


7.         We welcome the Report by the Secretary-General on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace. The report makes several useful suggestions on how to enhance the effectiveness of the UN system in supporting Member State-led efforts, on strengthening partnerships with relevant stakeholders, and on ensuring predictable and sustainable funding of peacebuilding activities through the Peacebuilding Fund.


8.         We also welcome the draft resolution that is expected to be adopted by the UN General Assembly on this issue as it will demonstrate our collective commitment to move forward in the direction of this important objective.


Mr. President,


9.         Concrete action on this will require a much greater commitment to make a much higher and longer term political engagement and investment, including financial contribution in activities that help build and sustain peace.


10.       As is well known, the funds available for UN Peacebuilding efforts are not even 1% of the annual budget for UN Peacekeeping. In this context, we welcome the specific financing options presented by the Secretary-General in his report. These need to be examined seriously to address the current levels of funding that remain very inadequate. 


Mr. President,


11.       The importance of empowerment of women and youth and their participation in conflict resolution, peacebuilding and governance for sustaining peace is also becoming better understood. An increased institutionalized involvement of women in peacekeeping, conflict prevention and mediation and political processes is important. This requires capacity and institution building at the ground level.


12.       In this context, the example of the multi-faceted professionalism of the first ever all-women Formed Police Unit (FPU) at the UN peacekeeping Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), which served as a role model in inspiring Liberian women to increase their contribution has been well recognized. We are proud that this unit was deployed by India as early as 2007. More such examples will go a long way in helping communities in building and sustaining peace.


Mr. President,


13.       In an inter-connected global world, peace and security among nations are inter-linked and can only be ensured through long-term equitable sustainable development. This requires a spirit of genuine global partnership reflected in SDG 17 as also a more representative and equitable global governance system.


14.       On its part, India continues to expand its development partnership efforts with fellow developing countries to assist in their sustainable development priorities. Last year, we established an India-UN Development Partnership Fund to further strengthen such efforts.   


15.       Another recent example of building partnerships for achieving SDGs and climate action is the International Solar Alliance. The Alliance that has already brought more than 60 countries together, aims to work for making available affordable clean energy to millions that can help create jobs and achieve better living standards.  


Mr. President,


16.       The concept of sustaining peace requires the engagement of all the pillars of the United Nations. We appreciate the focus of the Secretary-General to strengthen operational and policy coherence and improved capacity across the United Nations system. We hope that the ongoing deliberations on the comprehensive reform proposals put forward by the Secretary General will help the system deliver better on the peacebuilding and sustaining peace agenda.


17.       We look forward to working with all partners in playing a constructive role in pursuing these objectives of achieving peace and prosperity for our peoples. 


Thank You.