Statement by Ambassador Dr. Maleeha Lodhi, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, at the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations (C-34)
(11 February 2019)

Mr. Chairman,

My delegation aligns itself with the statement delivered by Morocco on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement.

Let me at the outset pay tribute to the recently fallen peacekeepers in Mali and Abyei. We understand the pain as do others whose peacekeepers have had to make the ultimate sacrifice.

The safety and security of peacekeepers, Chair, is a critical and urgent issue for all of us. Threats to our peacekeepers, increasingly deployed in complex and evolving conflict zones, have increased manifold over the past few years. Yet, rather than address the real issues such as providing our troop adequate resources and capabilities, safety and security is often seen from the perspective of those who support so called robust peacekeeping, peace enforcement and counter-terrorism operations by peacekeepers.

Blurring the line between peacekeeping and peace enforcement is fraught with risk. It would impact the neutrality and credibility of the United Nations, precisely the principles on which the success of the enterprise is based. No one can support or expose the UN to become a party to any conflict.

The principles of peacekeeping are neither caveats nor impediments to mandate implementation or protection of civilians. Peacekeepers have repeatedly demonstrated through their timely and effective response, in hostile situations, that the response does not constrain the use of force. We firmly believe that the broad support, legitimacy and credibility that UN peacekeeping has come to enjoy over the decades are predicated on these very principles.

As a longstanding and consistent troop and police contributing country, Pakistan believes the fundamentals of peacekeeping must be preserved even as we adapt to changing realities.

Mr. Chairman,

Mandated to discuss all aspects and dimensions of peacekeeping, this Committee must play its role in norm building and policy formulation, and enable peacekeepers to meet the high expectations that we all have of them.

Here I would like to make six specific points:

Mr. Chairman,

ĎAchieving more with lessí, is not sustainable, at least not until the accepted rules of cause and effect continue to govern the universe. It is time we start enabling our peacekeepers to live up to the ideals that we claim to be committed to.

In keeping with these ideals, and fully appreciating the importance of female participation in peacekeeping, Pakistan is proud to have achieved the goal of deployment of 15% female staff officers in UN Missions. Pakistan is deploying a female engagement team to Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) in May 2019.

Moreover as a host state of the United Nations Observer Mission in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP), Pakistan has always fulfilled its commitments to help in the implementation of its mandate. We believe UNMOGIP has been and continues to play an important role in the maintenance of peace and security in a volatile neighbourhood. We also support strengthening UNMOGIP to make it more effective.

To conclude Chair, as a contributor, and as a host state, we will continue to support efforts to strengthen peacekeeping. Our faith in it as an indispensable tool for the maintenance of international peace and security is firm and abiding.

I thank you.