The United Kingdom would like to express its deep recognition to the Fifth Committee Chair and Bureau for their hard work in continuing to service the work of the Fifth Committee in such extraordinary circumstances as we face at the current time, and also to colleagues from the Fifth Committee Secretariat, the ACABQ, and UN Secretariat for their support to our ongoing work.
The UK is committed to successful UN Peacekeeping in support of international peace and security. This requires full delivery of mandates, effective performance, and adequate, cost-effective financing. The UK delegation looks forward to working collaboratively within the Committee in support of our responsibility to assess and take account of the evidence presented to us with regards to the budgetary and operational elements of Peacekeeping operations. In so doing, the UK will seek to ensure that the proposed resourcing supports full delivery of Peacekeeping mandates in a manner consistent with effective, efficient management of resources.
The Committee will operate against a backdrop of extraordinary circumstances, in which it will continue to negotiate remotely for all or part of the session, and in which many delegates are experiencing concern for the health or livelihoods of friends and loved ones around the world as a result of COVID-19. In this, the UK expects that the Committee will demonstrate the community spirit and strong relationships for which it is well-known.
The UK is conscious that some Peacekeeping operations and their host countries are experiencing impacts from the pandemic, and would like to pay tribute to the dedication of the uniformed and civilian personnel in responding to these difficult situations, as well to the sacrifices made by Peacekeepers in the course of their important duties.
The UK has been a strong advocate for the SG’s reforms, and will continue to back effective implementation in pursuit of a high-performing, efficient, accountable, well-managed UN organisation, including through discussions in this session in which we should aim to ensure that our decisions are in the best interests of the Organisation.
The UK will continue to seek progress on priorities which support the full delivery of mandates and effective performance, including gender parity, action to address sexual exploitation & abuse and sexual harassment, gender mainstreaming, human rights, responsible management of the environment, effective use of technology, and protection of civilians. We recognise the important role that the recommendations of bodies such as the OIOS and the BOA play in supporting a culture of continuous improvement within the Organisation.
The UK previously expressed concern that in January we saw the principle of consensus-based decision-making undermined on ACABQ enlargement, on which issue no sincere attempt was made to engage in discussion within the Fifth Committee in pursuit of consensus. We look forward to the discussion this session on improving working methods in the context of enlargement. We trust that we will continue to see a renewed commitment within this Committee to the principle of consensus-based decisions going forward.
The UK expects to make rapid progress this session under the leadership and guidance of the Committee Chair, and looks forward to excellent cooperation with all member states in support of timely agreement of the necessary resources for UN Peacekeeping operations.