High-ranking representatives from nearly 80 countries met in London on 7 and 8 September to discuss strategies for strengthening United Nations (UN) peace missions. A key topic at the meeting were ways and means to improve the efficiency and responsiveness of the UN peace missions. Germany has offered technical and logistical support via the Federal Agency for Technical Relief.
Specialised civilian forces can make a real difference
At their meeting in London, the participants first analysed the extent to which the pledges of the Leaders’ Summit on UN Peacekeeping of September 2015, chaired by US President Obama, had been implemented. The role played by women in UN peacekeeping was also on the agenda. In the course of discussions regarding the efficiency and responsiveness of missions, it became apparent that peace missions are not restricted to the work of UN peacekeepers, but that specialised civilian forces are also capable of making a real difference. When it comes to technical and logistical tasks such as the swift construction of housing and community facilities and hospitals, installing electrical infrastructure or connecting water supplies, they are often the best port of call.
Thirty experts for the UN’s Peacekeeping Capabilities Readiness System
At the meeting in London, the Federal Government therefore signalled its willingness to contribute the first civilian expert team to the UN’s Peacekeeping Capabilities Readiness System (PCRS). Up to 30 specialists working for the Federal Agency for Technical Relief can be mobilised at short notice in order to support efforts to set up or expand UN missions from a technical and logistical point of view.
Important German contribution
With Germany’s support, UN peacekeepers and police officers will be quicker to fulfil their intended purpose when seconded to missions, i.e. protect the civilian population and supplies of humanitarian aid, as well as flank political processes. Thanks to the Federal Agency for Technical Relief, Germany is therefore able to make an important contribution to ensuring that UN peace missions can be deployed more rapidly and to greater effect.