Peacebuilding

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Peacebuilding and sustaining peace encompass activities aimed at preventing the outbreak, escalation, continuation and recurrence of conflict.

History

In his 1992 report on Agenda for Peace, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali defined peacebuilding as action to identify and support structures which will tend to strengthen and solidify peace in order to avoid a relapse into conflict[1]. The Security Council, in its presidential statement of 20 February 2001, stated:

The Security Council recognizes that peace-building is aimed at preventing the outbreak, the recurrence or continuation of armed conflict and therefore encompasses a wide range of political, developmental, humanitarian and human rights programmes and mechanisms. This requires short and long-term actions tailored to address the particular needs of societies sliding into conflict or emerging from it. These actions should focus on fostering sustainable institutions and processes in areas such as sustainable development, the eradication of poverty and inequalities, transparent and accountable governance, the promotion of democracy, respect for human rights and the rule of law and the promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence.

In 2005, the Secretary-General proposed the establishment of an intergovernmental Peacebuilding Commission and a Peacebuilding Support Office within the United Nations Secretariat[2]; the General Assembly agreed to both proposals in the 2005 World Summit Outcome, as adopted in General Assembly resolution 60/1 of 16 September 2005. The Peacebuilding Commission was formally established through the adoption of General Assembly resolution 60/180 and Security Council resolution 1645 (2005) of 20 December 2005. The Peacebuilding Fund was subsequently established through the adoption of General Assembly resolution 60/287 on the basis of arrangements proposed by the Secretary-General in his report A/60/984.

This peacebuilding architecture is reviewed by the General Assembly and Security Council every five years.

Peacebuilding Commission

The main purposes of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) are:

(a) To bring together all relevant actors to marshal resources and to advise on and propose integrated strategies for post-conflict peacebuilding and recovery;
(b) To focus attention on the reconstruction and institution-building efforts necessary for recovery from conflict and to support the development of integrated strategies in order to lay the foundation for sustainable development;
(c) To provide recommendations and information to improve the coordination of all relevant actors within and outside the United Nations, to develop best practices, to help to ensure predictable financing for early recovery activities and to extend the period of attention given by the international community to post-conflict recovery; [3]

The Organizational Committee of the PBC consists of 31 members, as follows:

(a) Seven members of the Security Council, including permanent members, selected according to rules and procedures decided by the Council;
(b) Seven members of the Economic and Social Council, elected from regional groups according to rules and procedures decided by the Council and giving due consideration to those countries that have experienced post-conflict recovery;
(c) Five top providers of assessed contributions to United Nations budgets and of voluntary contributions to United Nations funds, programmes and agencies, including the standing peacebuilding fund…selected by and among the ten top providers, giving due consideration to the size of their contributions…;
(d) Five top providers of military personnel and civilian police to United Nations missions…selected by and among the ten top providers, giving due consideration to the size of their contributions…;
(e) Giving due consideration to representation from all regional groups in the overall composition of the Committee and to representation from countries that have experienced post-conflict recovery, seven additional members shall be elected according to rules and procedures decided by the General Assembly;[4]

The Commission takes decisions on the basis of consensus.

Peacebuilding Fund

The Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) is a global fund designed to support several country situations simultaneously and therefore combines the scope of a global fund with the country-specific focus of a multi-donor trust fund. Its basic architecture is based upon a two-tier decision-making process, involving a central allocation of funding to the countries eligible for Peacebuilding Fund support and, at the country level, a joint review by the Government and the ranking United Nations representative in the country to disburse funds against agreed-upon programme and project activities. [5]

Financing of the Peacebuilding Fund

The General Assembly originally specified that the Peacebuilding Fund was to be financed entirely through voluntary contributions. In 2018, the Secretary-General called for Member States to provide the Fund with an additional amount of either $100 million or a symbolic amount equivalent to 1% of approved resources for peacekeeping operations on an annual basis in order to improve the predictability and sustainability of available resources. A detailed proposal for operationalizing this request was submitted to the General Assembly in 2021[6].

On 22 December 2023, the General Assembly established a Peacebuilding Account through which to provide $50 million in assessed contributions on an annual basis to the Peacebuilding Fund. The assembly decided that half of the amount would be assessed under the scale of assessments for the regular budget and half under the peacekeeping scale of assessments.

Terms of reference of the Peacebuilding Fund

The terms of reference of the Peacebuilding Fund were originally issued as an annex to A/60/984 and were subsequently revised as reflected in the annex to A/63/818.

Reports on the Peacebuilding Fund

The Secretary-General submits to the General Assembly an annual report on the operation and activities of the Fund pursuant to resolution 63/282. In addition, the UNDP Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office—the administrative agent for the Peacebuilding Fund[7]—issues an annual financial report for the Fund.

Period ending SG report Associated MPTFO report Notes
31 December 2022 A/77/756
31 December 2021 A/76/687 2021 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2020 A/75/735 2020 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2019 A/74/688 2019 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2018 A/73/829 2018 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2017 A/72/740 2017 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2016 A/71/792 2016 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2015 A/70/715 2015 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2014 A/69/745 2014 Consolidated Annual Financial Report
31 December 2013 A/68/722 2013 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds
31 December 2012 A/67/711 2012 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds
31 December 2011 A/66/659 2011 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds SG report switched to calendar-year reporting to align with PBC annual report
30 June 2010 A/65/353 2010 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds
30 June 2009 A/64/217–S/2009/419 2009 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds
30 June 2008 A/63/218–S/2008/522 and Corr.1 2008 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds
30 June 2007 A/62/138 2007 Financial reporting on sources and uses of funds

Peacebuilding Support Office

The Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO) was established to support the Peacebuilding Commission and to manage the Peacebuilding Fund. It is headed by an Assistant Secretary-General. Selection for the Assistant Secretary-General is governed by General Assembly resolution 62/236:

69. Decides that the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support shall be appointed by the Secretary-General following consultations with Member States, that for this purpose the Secretary-General shall appoint the Assistant Secretary-General with due regard for geographical rotation and that in so doing he shall be guided by the provisions of paragraph 3 (e) of General Assembly resolution 46/232 of 2 March 1992, in which the Assembly decided, in particular, that, as a general rule, no national of a Member State should succeed a national of that State in a senior post and that there should be no monopoly on senior posts by nationals of any State or group of States;

70. Also decides that the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support shall serve for one fixed term of five years without possibility of renewal;

Although the PBSO was established as a standalone office, as part of the restructuring of the peace and security pillar, PBSO was merged with the former Department of Political Affairs in the new Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (DPPA) on 1 January 2019.

Relevant documents

Key legislative actions

Report General Assembly resolution Security Council resolution Notes
A/76/668 and Corr.1; A/76/732 76/305 Financing for peacebuilding (follow-up to April 2022 high-level meeting)
A/74/935–S/2020/645 75/201 2558 (2020) 2020 peacebuilding architecture review
A/69/968-S/2015/490 70/262 2282 (2016) 2015 peacebuilding architecture review;
GA and SC resolutions regularly referred to as the "twin" resolutions
A/64/868-S/2010/393 65/7 1947 (2010) 2010 peacebuilding architecture review
A/63/818 63/282 Took note of revised terms of reference of the Peacebuilding Fund
A/60/984 60/287 Took note of the proposed terms of reference of the Peacebuilding Fund
A/59/2005/Add.2 60/180 1645 (2005) Establishment of the Peacebuilding Commission; reaffirmed decision to establish Peacebuilding Fund
A/59/2005 60/1 2005 World Summit outcome; Established PBC and PBSO

Reports on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace

Report General Assembly resolution Security Council resolution Notes
A/76/668–S/2022/66 Peacebuilding and sustaining peace
A/74/976–S/2020/773 75/201 2558 (2020) Peacebuilding and sustaining peace
A/73/890-S/2019/448 Peacebuilding and sustaining peace
A/72/707-S/2018/43 72/276 2413 (2018) First report on peacebuilding and sustaining peace;
contained options on increasing financing for peacebuilding
A/69/399-S/2014/694 Peacebuilding in the aftermath of conflict
A/67/499-S/2012/746 Peacebuilding in the aftermath of conflict
A/65/354-S/2019/466 Peacebuilding in the aftermath of conflict
A/64/866-S/2010/386 Progress report on peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict
A/63/881-S/2009/304 First report on peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict

Other documents

Civilian capacity review

In the 2009 report on peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict, the Secretary-General called for an analysis of how the United Nations could better support national institution-building in the aftermath of conflict. A senior advisory group, chaired by former Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Marie Guéhenno, presented a number of recommendations in its report on civilian capacity in the aftermath of conflict A/65/747-S/2011/85.

Report ACABQ report General Assembly resolution[8] Notes
A/68/696-S/2014/5 and Corr.1 A/68/784 Consideration deferred to 69th session in decision 68/549C; not subsequently taken up
A/67/312-S/2012/645 A/67/583 Consideration deferred to 68th session in decision 67/552C
A/66/311-S/2011/527 66/255

See also

References

  1. A/47/277 An Agenda for Peace: Preventative diplomacy, peacemaking and peacekeeping (paragraph 21)
  2. A/59/2005 In Larger Freedom: Towards development, security and human rights for all (paragraph 114)
  3. General Assembly resolution 60/180 and Security Council resolution 1645(2005), paragraph 2
  4. General Assembly resolution 60/180 and Security Council resolution 1645(2005), paragraph 4
  5. A/60/984 Arrangements for establishing the Peacebuilding Fund
  6. A/76/732 Investing in prevention and peacebuilding: Report of the Secretary-General
  7. Revised memorandum of understanding between the UN and UNDP regarding the operational aspects of the Peacebuilding Fund, signed 15 December 2016
  8. This only refers to standalone resolutions; the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations also considered the civilian capacity review reports.