Ulkoministeri Timo Soini
Alkuperäinen kieli

Statement by H.E. Mr Timo Soini, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland, at the 7th Ministerial Breakfast of the Group of Friends of Mediation, UN General Assembly 71, New York, 22 September 2016

I would like to welcome you to the seventh Ministerial Meeting of the United Nations Group of Friends of Mediation. I am very happy to co-host this meeting together with my colleague Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu from Turkey.

A warm welcome to all members of the Group.

This group was founded in September 2010. During these past six years, it has brought mediation to the core of UN´s peace work. By initiating resolutions on mediation, important guidance has been provided. The fourth resolution, which was adopted by the General Assembly two weeks ago, is an important step for-ward in efforts to strengthen mediation and its use in conflict resolution.

The group was also actively involved in the work of the High-Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations. The implementa-tion of the Panel´s recommendations is well under way.

All in all, we have achieved a lot, and we should be proud that our efforts have borne fruit.

At the same time, the group´s membership has enlarged to 52. This shows how important the UN members find mediation as means to prevent and end conflicts and settle disputes.

As for Finland, in addition to co-chairing this group, we co-chair the Group of Friends of Mediation in the Organization for Secu-rity and Co-operation in Europe together with Turkey and Swit-zerland and the Group of Friends of Mediation of the European Union together with Spain.

Finland puts increasing focus on the participation of all relevant stakeholders and on the role of dialogue as means to achieve lasting peace. We have organized two Conferences on National Dialogue and Mediation Processes in Helsinki. The preparations for the third such Conference are under way. Finland has also been hosting, since 2014, the Helsinki Policy Forum that brings together political leaders, parliamentarians and government offi-cials from Europe, the Gulf, Middle East and North Africa to work towards a sustainable dialogue on peace and security in the region.

Advancement of women's rights and gender equality is the best way to make world more peaceful. The relevance of gender issues and women's participation in peace processes is today widely understood even if not yet universally cheered. All successful dialogues have to be inclusive and co-owned. Therefore, we also promote networks of women mediators as well as religious and traditional leaders. We should find ways to benefit fully from the experience of all relevant parties to save lives and reduce human suffering.

The World Humanitarian Summit, which took place in Istanbul in May, affirmed that more political leadership was required for mediation. My co-chair, Minister Çavuşoğlu will explain in de-tail how today´s meeting links to the Summit outcomes and commitments.

Even though we have done much to develop mediation, we have not been that successful in preventing conflicts. They have be-come more and more complex and their impact on human beings is greater than ever.

We need to ask ourselves how mediation can be used effectively to address them in Syria, Sub-Saharan Africa, Ukraine and other places. Are we missing some important elements? Is there some-thing more that we can do to develop mediation capacities, in-cluding those of United Nations?

The efforts cannot be successful unless sufficient resources are put in place for implementation. We are not there yet; more investment in mediation is needed.

There are also positive examples from which to learn. The signing of the peace agreement in Colombia proves that sustained commitment to mediation and support from various stakeholders can overcome long and difficult conflicts.

Important work has been carried out, but changing situations oblige us to continuously review and improve our work.

In this context, I would also ask how to enhance the work that we do as Friends of Mediation, and how this Group could really make a difference. What can we concretely do?

This year will conclude with the selection of the ninth Secretary-General of the United Nations. It should be ensured, that media-tion will be high on her or his agenda. This meeting is an oppor-tunity to transmit our vision on how we envisage the UN work on mediation to be taken forward.
I hope that this meeting will bring about some ideas and sugges-tions in this regard.

I am also glad that Under-Secretary-General Feltman is here with us to share his view on lessons learned and what we should take into account when advising the next Secretary-General.

Tämä puhe on tulostettu Ulkopoliittisen instituutin ylläpitämästä EILEN-arkistosta.

Suositeltava viittaustapa:
Timo Soini: Ulkoministeri Timo Soinin puhe rauhanvälityksen ystäväryhmän ministeriaamiaisella, YK:n 71. yleiskokous, New York, 22.9.2016, 22.9.2016, (22.6.2018)

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