Statement by H.E. Mr. Tsuneo Nishida
Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations
20 December 2012
At the Open Debate of the Security Council
On Post-Conflict Peacebuilding
At the outset, I would like to echo other delegates in expressing our appreciation to Ambassador Mohammed Loulichki, Permanent Representative of Morocco, for his leadership in convening today’s open debate. I would also like to express appreciation to the Secretary-General and the Chair of the Peacebuilding Commission for their briefings, as well as Assistant Secretary-General Judy Cheng-Hopkins and her team for their work in compiling the report of the Secretary-General on Peacebuilding in the Aftermath of Conflict (S/2012/746).
While agreeing with the report's findings that much more is needed to make an impact on the ground, Japan welcomes the significant progress made since the 2009 report, especially in the areas related to integrated planning. In our view, this is a crucial first step in aligning activities of stakeholders with national priorities and ensuring seamless peacebuilding transition in post-conflict countries.
In addition, Japan strongly supports the priority directions for peacebuilding outlined in the report, namely institution building, inclusivity, sustained international support, and mutual accountability. The following are the observations which Japan places particular importance. First, the importance of institutions in peacebuilding, and consequently development, cannot be overemphasized. Restoration of core government and service delivery functions, based on national ownership, and undertaken with an inclusive approach, are at the heart of statebuilding. As evidenced by the 2011 World Development Report, the international community must come up with stronger mechanisms for aligning stakeholders to support this. We also look forward to seeing positive results come out of the Civilian Capacities initiative as its activities share the important principle of national ownership. Second, inclusion of women in all peacebuilding processes must be accelerated, particularly in the areas of governance and economic recovery, in accordance with the Seven-Point Action Plan. Third, sustained international support is also crucial in creating space for countries to fully engage in institutional transformation, which can often take decades. Fourth, when engaging in post-conflict countries, the concept of mutual accountability allows for equal partnership between the recipient government and its international partners, as can be seen in the New Deal as well as in the declaration issued at the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan held in Japan this summer.
Japan has been a committed member of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) since its inception, currently serving as the Chair of the Working Group on Lessons Learned. In taking the recommendations of the report forward, we believe the PBC has and will continue to play a crucial role. Needless to say, a stronger partnership with the Security Council is crucial for the PBC to realize its full potential, particularly when Council decisions directly affect the peacebuilding processes of the Commission’s agenda country, such as when a UN mission transitions. The meeting of the Working Group held on the 21 November precisely focused on this point and emphasized the role of the PBC in ensuring sustained international support, by consciously linking the peace and security discussions to long-term development.
The complexity and the long term nature of peacebuilding require a multifaceted and holistic approach. One such example that Japan can present would be the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) process, our primary framework for dialogue on development issues with our African partners. The TICAD process has, since its inception, put great emphasis on the consolidation of peace as the basis of the development. In this context we are delighted to host our Fifth TICAD in Yokohama next June, together with the UN, UNDP, the World Bank, and the AU Commission, which will continue to focus on peace and stability in Africa.
The current discussion on the post-2015 development agenda also provides an invaluable opportunity for the member states to reflect on the role of peacebuilding in long-term development. The Secretary-General has called for the inclusion of the peacebuilding considerations related to inclusive politics, security, justice, economic foundation and revenue and services into the post-2015 development agenda. The issue has been introduced in the Post-MDGs Contact Group, which Japan chairs, as well as in the report submitted by the UN task team on the post-2015 development agenda. We are aware that challenges remain as to how to converge the different views on how and in which form peacebuilding should be incorporated into the next development framework. We believe that human security, emphasizing on the protection and empowerment of individuals through holistic approach, plays a significant role in this context. Human security contributes to realizing the pillars of the United Nations: peace and security, human rights, and development ultimately. Based on these notions, Japan remains committed to pushing the discussion forward.
In conclusion, I would like to reiterate Japan’s strong and lasting support to peacebuilding. Peacebuilding is a long process, but a process that is indispensable in ensuring human security for those affected by conflicts. Japan will remain deeply committed, both bilaterally and also through the PBC, in building sustainable peace in post-conflict countries.
I thank you.