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Statement at the Arria-formula Meeting on Collective Security

Thank you, Chair, and thank you to Ghana for organising this meeting. I would also like to join others in thanking our briefers for their important contributions.


Regional organisations are natural partners of the United Nations. The Charter makes this very clear. On peace, security, and humanitarian issues, we partner with organisations like the African Union, ECOWAS, SADC, the League of Arab States, and the European Union – to name but a few.


Multilateralism is at the core of Ireland’s foreign policy. And while cooperation among nations is not always straightforward, it is essential. The common challenges we face are too great for any one nation, large or small, to resolve alone.


Ireland knows this from the vital work regional organisations who support Security Council mandates throughout Africa and beyond. We know this from our membership of the European Union. We know this from our strong ties with the African Union.


Regional organisations, like the African Union, play a vital role in the vast array of efforts required to maintain peace, from peace and support operations, to the promotion of democracy and good governance, and leadership in the COVID-19 response.


These activities often fall outside the scope of traditional peace operations, but critically contribute to more inclusive, comprehensive, and sustainable approaches to maintaining peace.


Ireland is proud to support the European Union’s ongoing efforts in this regard and the work underway to strengthen the EU and the UN’s collective action in peace operations and crisis management. 


Ireland and the EU also strongly support efforts to strengthen regional capacities to address peace and security matters. This is clear from the steadfast EU support to developing security capacity in Somalia, through EU training missions and ongoing support for the reconfigured African Union mission, ATMIS.


Ireland will also continue to support greater UN-EU-AU cooperation on peace support operations, the benefits of such trilateral engagement can be further realised.


Not only do regional organisations support Security Council efforts, in many situations, they go beyond what the Council can do when it comes to addressing root causes and drivers of conflict, such as through efforts to mitigate climate change, build support for electoral democracy, and advancing peacebuilding at the local level.


Regional organisations also play a crucial role in promoting the full, equal and meaningful participation of women in peace and security efforts, enhancing vital community buy-in. Likewise, regional organisations recognise the important, yet oft-neglected, role that youth play in peacebuilding efforts.


Now is the time to reinvigorate our collective support for the African Union’s critical contributions to international peace and security.


We believe this Council should be ambitious, pursue greater collaboration, and take the UN-AU partnership to the next level, particularly by strengthening collaboration in conflict prevention, improving early warning mechanisms, and working together to more effectively manage peacekeeping transitions.


Ireland continues to support discussions on how we can best support the AU, including the need for predictable, sustainable and flexible financing for UN-authorised, AU-led peace support operations, as the Council agreed in our PRST last October, and we look forward to the African Union’s common position on the matter of UN financing. 


Thank you.


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