The 2023 United Nations (UN) Peacekeeping Ministerial Meeting opened here Wednesday to seek solutions to challenges facing UN peacekeeping and work toward concrete outcomes to enhance the effectiveness of peacekeeping operations worldwide.
The meeting gathered more than 600 delegates, including defense and foreign affairs ministers, and high-profile government and military officials in Accra, the capital of Ghana.
“This year’s meeting takes place at a critical time. Peacekeeping, the most innovative and powerful instrument of the UN that has brought peace and stability to many parts of the world, including the African continent, is confronted with new challenges,” said Ghanaian Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia in his opening address.
He reminded the delegates of the importance of a firm approach to conflict prevention, including actions that support resolving the root causes of conflict affecting the stability of any human society.
The vice president underscored the need to explore and navigate the gaps in peacekeeping, evaluate options for meaningful change, and work toward concrete outcomes to enhance the effectiveness of peacekeeping operations.
“In line with ongoing reform efforts, particularly on peace and digital transformation strategy, we must, from Accra, generate new and additional high-performing and specialized capabilities, foster sustainable partnerships, and chart a course toward a more robust and responsive peacekeeping apparatus,” Bawumia said.
He also reiterated Ghana’s unwavering commitment to strengthening UN peacekeeping in anticipation of further discussions on a new agenda for peace, hoping that the meeting would provide new impetus for peacekeeping and the effectiveness of deployments.
During the one-day meeting, delegates will discuss various themes, including protecting civilians, strategic communications, safety and security, peacekeepers’ mental health, and women’s indispensable role in peacekeeping.