I join others in welcoming the Project Co-ordinator in Ukraine, Ambassador Villadsen, back to the Permanent Council and thank him for his report. The PCU undertakes a long list of activities, and I will only mention a few in my statement.
Norway appreciates the efforts undertaken to mitigate the effects of the Covid pandemic, and the flexible approach, which has allowed the PCU to carry out a substantial part of its planned activities. The use of online resources and virtual meetings have made it possible to reach a large audience over great distances. We hope that once the pandemic is over, this year’s experiences can be of value also for future activities.
We welcome the approach taken in the Rule of Law and Human Rights programme, where practical aspects of the gender dimension are included in a comprehensive way. This shows how gender mainstreaming contributes to making our field operations more effective. We encourage the PCU to increase attention to gender sensitivity and gender mainstreaming also in its work under other dimensions.
The conflict in Eastern Ukraine is still ongoing. We support cooperation between the PCU and the SMM within the existing mandates and appreciate all efforts to assist civilians and alleviate their suffering.
One of the main priorities for the PCU is capacity building. Capacity building is most effective when it is conducted according to the host country’s priorities and when the host country is willing and able to implement necessary reforms. We encourage the PCU and the authorities in Kyiv and in the Ukrainian regions to continue the cooperation we have seen these last years.
We note the PCU’s contribution to elaborating draft laws, standards and guidelines. It would be interesting to hear how you follow up to what extent these laws, standards and guidelines are implemented in practice.