On Thursday, May 26th, the Independent Commission on Multilateralism (ICM) hosted a Public Consultation on its Discussion Paper: “Armed Conflict: Mediation, Conciliation, and Peacekeeping.” This Public Consultation provided a platform for representatives from member states, civil society, non-governmental organizations, the private sector, academia, and the United Nations to comment on the Discussion Paper’s recommendations and exchange perspectives on the larger trends and challenges at hand.
From the rise of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, to the rekindling of long-standing conflicts in places such as Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Somalia, to the desperate waves of refugees arriving in Europe, to the specter of sectarian violence in Burundi and elsewhere, recent events have challenged the international system to provide adequate responses.
The persistence of armed conflict motivates a growing perception that global stability is at risk. While the number of armed conflicts has decreased, the number of conflict-related deaths has dramatically increased, as has the number of high-intensity, long-lasting conflicts. Further, the increased involvement of various outside and non-state actors, as well as the increased presence of organized crime in conflict settings, has made recent armed conflicts resistant to peaceful settlement. It was in this context that the UN system set out to review the key elements of its peace and security architecture in 2015. This Discussion Paper assesses these reviews, additional developments such as the adoption of the joint resolution on the Review of the Peacebuilding Architecture, as well as other challenges facing the multilateral system in the areas of: mediation, peacebuilding, and peacekeeping.
H.E. Mr. Philbert Johnson, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Ghana to the United Nations
Mr. Arthur Boutellis, Director, Center for Peace Operations, International Peace Institute
Ms. Tatiana Carayannis, Deputy Director, Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum, Social Science Research Council
Ms. Mari Yamashita, Director, United Nations Peacebuilding Support Office
Dr. Youssef Mahmoud, Senior Adviser, International Peace Institute