French proposals for a New Agenda for Peace

Published in September 2021, the Joint Program of the Secretary-General of the United Nations (UNSG) is the new roadmap for the United Nations. It proposes an action plan that aims to accelerate the implementation of existing agreements, in particular the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). France supports this essential initiative, faithful to its commitments in favor of a renewed multilateralism adapted to the new global challenges.

The UNSG launched in 2022 discussions on the conclusions of the Joint Programme. They should lead to the adoption by the Member States of a “Pact for the future” on the occasion of “Future Summit” scheduled for September 22-23, 2024 in New York. Several agreements and texts on international governance issues will be negotiated during this Summit:

  • a statement for future generations;
  • a platform on emergencies;
  • recommendations for effective Multilateralism;
  • recommendations for better consideration of young people;
  • GDP+ for an index measuring development “beyond GDP”;
  • a global digital pact;
  • a global code of conduct for the integrity of public information;
  • a reform of the international financial architecture;
  • a political agreement on outer space;
  • a New Agenda for Peace.

In June 1992, United Nations Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali presented his Agenda for Peace. This report made recommendations on ways to strengthen the capacity of the United Nations in the areas of preventive diplomacy, peacekeeping and peacemaking, and post-conflict peacebuilding.

The elaboration of a New Agenda for Peace is the occasion for a new collective reflection on the future of the tools of the United Nations in favor of international peace and security. It will make it possible to review and set out new collective priorities for peace.

In response to the Secretary-General’s consultation on the New Agenda for Peace, France formulates 20 propositions related to the action of the United Nations to guarantee international peace and security. They aim to strengthen the authority of the collective security system, modernize its means of action and prevent risks in strategic areas (disarmament, cyber, space in particular).

Among these proposals, France reiterates its support for a enlargement of the Security Council in both categories of members, permanent and non-permanent. In particular, it calls for increased representation of African countries in these two categories.

It also emphasizes the need regulate the use of the right of veto to the Security Council. France is carrying, with Mexico, an initiative proposing that the five permanent members of the Council collectively and voluntarily suspend the use of the veto in the event of mass atrocities. This initiative has already received the support of 106 States.

France also encourages the strengthening the role and resources of the United Nations Secretary-General. She wants him to be able to appoint directly, without the approval of the Security Council, his representatives and special envoys, as well as the members of the expert panels of the sanctions committees.

The New Agenda for Peace must also be an opportunity to rethinking a comprehensive approach to peacekeeping. Peacekeeping operations, whose model is sometimes called into question, must be rethought, in particular in the face of the rise in terrorism. The involvement of the United Nations in the political processes, necessary for emerging from crises, must be reinforced. The intervention of mercenaries pursuing objectives contrary to those of the blue helmets must be avoided.

Moreover, African peace operations, complementary to UN peacekeeping operations, must be able to benefit from predictable funding. As such, the United Nations must contribute to their financing. An agreement between the United Nations Organization and the African Union is necessary to define the framework and modalities of governance and financing of African peace operations.

Finally, France pleads for the strengthening of the effectiveness and legitimacy of the sanctions regimesas well as the role and independence of the panels of experts appointed to contribute to it.

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