CCCPA Participates in Peacebuilding and Peacekeeping Seminars in New York
14 April 2016
New York - CCCPA participated in two international seminars on the role of emerging powers in peacekeeping & peacebuilding, from 22-23 March 2016. The first seminar “New Approaches to Peacebuilding: Practices and Policies from the Global South” was supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs & the Carnegie Cooperation of New York. While the second seminar "Partners in Reform: Rising Powers and UN Peace Operations" was held as part of the ongoing activities by the PeaceCap Network, a research network aimed at analyzing the growing influence of emerging countries on peace operations.The Rising Powers and UN Peace Operations seminar, organized under the umbrella of the PeaceCap Network (the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs) and hosted by the Centre for International Cooperation (CIC), was devoted to discussing the synthesis report on the research projects conducted by the members of the network (Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Norway, Russia, South Africa and Turkey). The seminar gathered representatives of Member States, Think Tanks and experts on UN Peace Operations.
Director of CCCPA, Counselor Ashraf Swelam, presented the findings of the center’s research paper on Egypt’s role in peacekeeping “Egypt as a Peacekeeper: Contributions and Policies, Egypt's Stance on the UN Strategic Reviews on Peacekeeping & Peacebuilding”. He also briefed the participants on the outcome of the regional workshop recently organized by CCCPA "Arab Perspectives on the Future of the UN Peace and Security Architecture: Towards a Timely, Collective and Effective Response". Counselor Swelam indicated that one of the prominent issues raised during the Arab workshop is that UN reform should be political rather than a technical fix that has a sole aim of bridging the gap between principles and practice of peacekeeping and peacebuilding. He added that Egypt supports the recommendations derived from the UN strategic reviews on the promotion of conflict prevention and emphasized the importance of clearly defining this concept among the UN and its Member States.
PeaceCap network members presented their research findings, highlighting the contribution of their countries in peace operations, ranging from their contributions on the ground as troops and police contributing countries (TCCs/PCCs), to their contributions to peacekeeping policy debates. Despite the common ground between the rising powers regarding their stance on peacekeeping debatable issues, some countries, however, adopted a more flexible approach towards concepts such as the protection of civilians (PoC) and the use of force. Moreover, the rationale behind the participation of these countries in peacekeeping operations differed from one to another, based on each country’s national security point of view, the financial compensation aspired and international prestige gained.
During the open discussion, a number of issues and recommendations were raised, most notably, the importance of stronger engagement for rising powers in the decision making process given their weight as top TCCs/PCCs in UN peace operations, and promoting the respect for UN peacekeeping principles in light of the growing role of regional organization in peace operations. Moreover, recommendations included the importance of enhancing coordination between peacekeeping training centers in order to ensure their commitment to the training standards of the United Nations.
The New Approaches to Peacebuilding seminar, co-organized by the permanent missions of Indonesia and Norway, gathered representatives of Member States, research institutes, universities and Think Tanks. H.E. Mogens Lyketoft, President of the 70th session of UN General Assembly, addressed the participants in the opening session and highlighted that the international community must recognize the importance of the UN Peacebuilding Architecture as part of a preventive framework -- in light of the recommendations of the 2015 Review of the United Nations Peacebuilding Architecture on the promotion of conflict prevention.
The seminar was devoted to presenting the findings of the research projects by Centers from Indonesia, India, Turkey and South Africa. The findings demonstrated a number of commonalities between these emerging countries, especially their stance on peacebuilding issues and the various accompanying activities. In addition, during the open discussion, participants raised a number of issues, most notably the definition of “sustainable peace”. While some participants viewed sustainable peace as “ongoing activities aimed at preventing countries from relapsing to conflicts (post-conflict phase)”, other participants defined sustainable peace as “preventing conflicts before erupting rather than preventing them from relapsing (pre-conflict phase)”.
On the sidelines of the seminars, CCCPA conducted a series of meetings with the following entities:
1. Meeting with the Chief of Integrated Training Service (ITS) of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO): During the meeting, CCCPA’s Director and the Chief of ITS discussed details on future cooperation, in light of the pre-deployment Training of Trainers (TOT) that the center will be hosting in July 2016 for the first time following the UN update of the Core Pre-deployment Training Material (CPTM).
2. Meeting with representatives from the Office of the President of the UN General Assembly (PGA): This meeting was devoted to discussing current arrangements for the high-level thematic debate organized by the PGA in 11-12 May 2016, as Egypt (non-permanent member in the United Nations Security Council for 2016-2017) will be organizing an event on the sidelines of the debate.
3. Meeting with the Director of the UN Policy and Mediation Division: This meeting was devoted to exploring potential cooperation opportunities between CCCPA and the UN Mediation Division, ranging from organizing joint training courses to building the capacities of CCCPA’s staff in the field of mediation.
4. Meeting with UN DPKO and DPA Officials: CCCPA’s Director briefed the attendees on Egypt’s initiative for organizing an Arab retreat for Special Representatives & Peace Envoys in the Arab Region. Details on the draft agenda and the suggested date and time for the event were also discussed.