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28 August 2007
Security Council Chamber

Mr. Leo Mrors:

()t the 2005 World Summit, when heads of State and Government gathered in New York, they stressed the importance of the prevention of armed conflicts and solemnly renewed their commitment to strengthen the capacity of the United Nations in that regard.

hey also stressed the need for the Security Council, the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council and the Secretary- General to coordinate their activities within their respective Charter mandates. I am convinced that there is still room for progress to enhance that coordination and cooperation.

()We should strive to provide the necessary tools for the United Nations to play that crucial role, while fully respecting the sovereignty of all Member States.
However, in the final analysis, it is up to each State to take responsibility to prevent conflicts. In his 2006 report on the prevention of armed conflict (A/60/891), the Secretary-General remarked that culture of prevention is beginning to take hold at the United Nations but that n unacceptable gap still remains between rhetoric and reality. The most important priority is, then, to make conflict prevention an operational reality. ()

Mr. Alfredo Suescum:

()The responsibility for resolving disputes and preventing a conflict rests, as a founding principle of this Organization, in the first place with the States party to a conflict. Achieving peace, however, depends to a large extent on our commitment to the architecture of collective security that we have brought together in the United Nations. This Council and the Assembly should redouble efforts to facilitate the success of the measures provided for under Chapter VI of the Charter for the peaceful settlement of disputes, given the human consequences inherent in any conflict. ( )

Mr. Aldo Mantovani:

The Councils action to implement resolution 1625 (2005) should be built on the recognition that the primary responsibility for conflict prevention resides with Member States. The experience of the African continent demonstrates that the absolute prerequisite for any change is the political will of national actors, especially in countries emerging from conflicts. The Council should encourage and support the efforts of national actors.

() Second, conflict prevention should be a collective effort of the whole United Nations system, and I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the General Assembly for having laid the foundations for our common work, particularly through its resolution 57/337.Council

Mr. Dusan Matulay:

()Last but not least, all these efforts cannot substitute for the leadership and work done by national authorities, who hold the primary responsibility for conflict prevention. The 2005 World Summit codified the responsibility to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. This responsibility lies with each individual State and entails the prevention of such crimes through appropriate and necessary means.

Slovakia strongly believes that this responsibility can be best fulfilled though the introduction and implementation of policies that have proven effective in this regard in many countries, including our own. These policies imply strict adherence to and implementation and enforcement of internationally recognized human rights standards and democratic principles, the rule of law and good governance, including the sound management of national wealth, and security sector reform. The implementation of these principles has helped make our continent stable and secure. We believe in the universal applicability of these principles, and we are therefore convinced that they will help Africa find the path to peace and stability, just as they helped Europe.

Finally, the responsibility to protect also implies that, when national capacities and the ability to face extensive potential threats are inadequate, the responsibility to identify possible risks and ask for the assistance of the United Nations and the international community lies primarily with the national authorities.

Mr. Valerie Yankey:

()The Security Council, as the organ with the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, must of necessity be interested in these issues as ones of strategic importance to its mandate. The time has come, therefore, for the Council to redefine its relationship with the other organs of the United Nations bearing direct responsibility for some of the problems that account for the proliferation of conflicts in Africa.

()In all these efforts, African Governments owe their countries and citizens a responsibility to protect lives and property. They must demonstrate the political will and, in collaboration with civil society, the private sector and the international community, fulfill their share of the responsibilities.

() Without increased investment in conflict prevention, Africa will not achieve the rapid acceleration in development that its people seek. Investing in development is itself an investment in peace and security.

Mr. Henri-Paul Normandin:

() As the Secretary-General pointed out in his most recent report, a significant gap remains between rhetoric on conflict prevention and the reality on the ground. The World Summits endorsement of the responsibility to protect must now be translated into swift international action to prevent genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. That must be done both by improving the capacity of States themselves to intervene and by more speedy international efforts. ()

Mr. Jos Alberto Briz Gutirrez:

()Prevention is a fundamental responsibility of States. The United Nations and the international community play a subsidiary support role to national endeavours. In that sense, we draw attention to the importance in any prevention endeavour of building national capacity in those areas, and the need to promote dialogue with all actors and to include the valuable contribution of civil society. ()

Mr. Jean-Marie Ehouzou:

()Conflict prevention is an essential aspect of the Security Councils mandate emanating from Chapter VI of the Charter and, more specifically, its Article 34. The Council has made considerable efforts to meet the challenges identified. Its various initiatives are based on the 10 principles of conflict prevention set out in the Secretary-Generals first report on the subject (S/2001/574), dated 7 June 2001, to which are added the recently defined criteria for the exercise by the international community of the responsibility to protect.

()It is clear that the United Nations system in conducting peacekeeping operations has, until recently, operated with marginal involvement by regional organizations. The time has come to make the necessary changes in order to make it possible for the organizations to fully play their role in the collective security system established by the Charter both in terms of the doctrine of peace operations and in the allocation of related resources. ()


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