The Permanent Representative of Romania to the UN, Ambassador Ion I. Jinga presented, on Monday, 20 May 2019, in the United Nations General Assembly plenary meeting, the Report of the Romanian Chairmanship of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), position held by our country between 31 January 2018 and 28 January 2019. The meeting was attended by the Assistant Secretary General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco, the Permanent Representatives of the member states of the United Nations, and representatives of the United Nations Peacebuilding Support Office.
The Romanian Ambassador mentioned that “during Romania’s Chairmanship of the PBC, the bridging, convening and advisory roles to the UN bodies of the Commission were strengthened, contributing to increased coherence of peacebuilding in the UN system, thus reinforcing its contribution in supporting conflict affected countries and other countries that engaged with the PBC on the basis of the principle of national ownership”.
Presenting the most notable accomplishments of Romania at the Chairmanship of this intergovernmental body, he underscored the intensification of the relation with the United Nations Security Council, “PBC is a sui generis organism in advising the UN Security Council regarding peacebulding-related issues”. In relation with the UN General Assembly, he emphasized the PBC contribution to organizing the High-Level Meeting of the General Assembly on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace, held in April 2018, that led to the adoption of the twin General Assembly and Security Council resolutions on peacebuilding and sustaining peace. At the same time, he recalled the joint PBC – Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) meeting, which tackled, for the first time, the topic of the “Linkages between climate change and the challenges to peacebuilding and sustaining peace in the Sahel region”.
The Permanent Representative highlighted the special focus on the Sahel region, the main priority of the Romanian mandate at the PBC Chairmanship, mentioning that the PBC Annual meeting was dedicated to the priorities and challenges to peacebuilding and sustaining peace in this region. He recalled that he participated, in March 2018, to the sixth meeting of the Ministerial Coordination Platform for the Sahel, held in Chad, which also offered him the opportunity to see projects financed by the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF).
Emphasizing the strong engagement of the Commission in the Sahel, Ambassador Ion I. Jinga stated in the UN General Assembly plenary that “the visit I conducted the Sahel and West Africa, in my capacity as Chair of the PBC, together with the Special Representative for West Africa and the Sahel and the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support, during which I met with high level national and local authorities, civil society representatives, diplomatic communities and UN Country teams in Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, The Gambia and Burkina Faso allowed me to reiterate the opportunity of the Commission to serve as a platform in support of national peacebuilding priorities”. At the same time, he mentioned the meeting he had, in Abidjan, with the management of the African Development Bank to discuss areas of cooperation in Africa, particularly in the Sahel, as part as the PBC efforts to consolidate the strategic partnership with international financial institutions, which was one of the objectives undertaken by Romania at the PBC Chairmanship.
Ambassador Ion I. Jinga highlighted the importance given by our country to strengthening the partnerships with the regional and sub-regional organisations, referring to the Informal Interactive Dialogue between the PBC and the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, in July last year, institutionalized as annual practice under the Romanian Chairmanship of the PBC. He mentioned that “for partnerships to be truly effective, they must be built around nationally identified priorities”, recalling the meetings on country specific configurations and those dedicated to regional issues. He exemplified the successful cooperation with The Gambia, the PBC activity in supporting the electoral processes in Sierra Leone and in Guinea-Bissau, as well as the support given to the transition process in Liberia and the PBC meetings on the Sahel: “Romania, in its current capacity as Vice-Chair of the PBC, remains fully committed to supporting the role of PBC in contributing to the consolidation of peacebuilding and sustaining peace, thanking all UN Member States representatives for their trust, support and advice during Romania’s tenure as PBC Chair and in exercising the current position as Vice-Chair of the Commission”.
The Representatives of the UN Member states that took the floor congratulated the Permanent Representative of Romania “for the excellent manner in which he conducted the work of the Commission and for the leadership and involvement invested in the strategic coordination of the PBC in 2018”, and underscored that “the Chairmanship of Romania to the PBC contributed to the notable advancement of the objectives of peacebuilding and sustaining peace”, welcoming that Romania currently holds the Vice-chairmanship of the PBC.