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Restructuring of Peacekeeping, Disarmament Funtions will Strengthen United Nations Capacity, says Secretary General in Statement To General Assembly


Following is today’s statement by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the General Assembly on the adoption of resolutions on the work of the Secretariat in peace operations and disarmament:

Allow me to express my sincere gratitude for what we have achieved today. Madam President, my thanks go first and foremost to you for your personal leadership and commitment in advancing the consultative process.

Let me also thank the distinguished and able facilitators -- His Excellency Ambassador Løvald of Norway, His Excellency Ambassador Kariyawasam of Sri Lanka, His Excellency Ambassador Salgueiro of Portugal and His Excellency Ambassador Rosselli of Uruguay -- for their crucial contribution in moving the consultations forward to allow for today’s adoption of the two resolutions.

And let me thank the membership as a whole for their support, their willingness to listen and their constructive engagement.

The consultative process may have been laborious at times, but I believe it has benefited us all. I know we have come to better understand each other and the perspectives that shape our actions and priorities.

Today, I see the adoption of these two resolutions as a good beginning to our work together. Now, we can embark on a reform initiative with one voice -- a collaboration based on mutual trust. Rest assured that I shall continue to consult Member States in a spirit of openness and transparency.

How, then, do we proceed from now on?

In your first resolution, you have asked me for a comprehensive report on the restructuring of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) and the establishment of the Department of Field Support (DFS). This report is to include functions, budgetary discipline and full financial implications, for consideration and decision by the General Assembly during its sixty-first session, in accordance with established procedures.

You have further called on me to take full account of the views of Member States -- including those expressed in the 2007 session of the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations -- in particular, the need to take all measures to guarantee unity of command and to promote integration of efforts and strengthen operational capacities both at Headquarters and field missions.

Madam President, as I indicated in the annex of my letter to you of 15 February, I am committed to maintaining unity of command and effort at all levels, here and in the field.

I shall submit by mid-April a comprehensive report that will cover these aspects. It will make clear the number of posts and the structure of units envisaged in both Departments, and the reporting lines within and between them. It will further make clear that DFS will be created by realigning responsibilities and resources from the DPKO Office of Mission Support, as well as from the Department of Management.

I am convinced that, in this way, together, we will strengthen the capacity of the Organization to manage and sustain peace operations.

On disarmament, I shall submit a report, as requested by your second resolution, on the financial, administrative and budgetary implications, and the implementation of the mandates assigned to the Office for Disarmament Affairs. As I indicated in my letter of 15 February, I am determined, through the work of my High Representative, to revitalize the disarmament agenda.

On the basis of your two resolutions, I shall proceed with the necessary appointments in consultation with Member States.

As I said at the outset, I believe today marks a new beginning. The road ahead will not be without its challenges. But I look forward to working hand in hand with you as we advance together. I look with confidence to our collective journey, and I promise, for my part, to make it as free as possible of unnecessary obstacles and detours.


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