Peacekeeping Debate Preparations
Council members are beginning to prepare for the open debate on peacekeeping scheduled for 26 August. This debate, initiated by India, the Council president for August, will be the first peacekeeping debate in 2011 and is expected to focus on the concerns of troop-contributing countries. On 8 August, India circulated a concept paper entitled “Peackeekeeping: taking stock and preparing for the future”. It seems that a draft presidential statement has also been circulated to Council members and discussions are expected to start next week.
Among the issues highlighted in the concept paper are host government consent and its implications for the concept of state sovereignty, the mismatch between resources and mandates of peacekeeping operations. A key focus on the paper is on peacekeeping as a partnership between the Council, the General Assembly and the troop and police-contributing countries (TCCs/PCCs). It stresses the importance of improving the consultations process between TCCs/PCCs and the Council. Another partnership highlighted is that between UN peacekeepers and regional organisations like the AU, and the need to help these regional organisations build capacity.
It seems that the draft presidential statement brings together a range of generic peacekeeping topics which have been discussed and agreed on in the past. It appears that one new element may be a practical suggestion for improving communication between the Council and the TCCs.