Thank you for convening us for this important discussion and I thank the briefers for their inputs.
Norway has been a consistent contributor to the United Nations Police.
We support UNPOL with highly skilled police officers and leaders like ms. Fossen, financial contributions, policy reforms and tools such as the Strategic Guidance Framework, as well as Specialized Police Teams- a deployment modality pioneered by Norway.
We recognize the need for UN Police to modernise its capacity-building to reflect contemporary policing methods, and respond to emerging threats.
Norway therefore welcomes the Secretary-General’s Action for Peacekeeping reform initiative, and the Action for Peacekeeping Plus implementation strategy.
We particularly commend the efforts that UNPOL has made to meet the target numbers from the Secretary-General’s Uniformed Gender Parity Strategy.
Nevertheless, we emphasize that gender parity is not only about quantitative measures, but also about maximizing the effectiveness of peace operations.
To this end, we must ensure that progress towards parity includes efforts to create a safe work environment for everyone, with a zero-tolerance policy for gender discrimination, sexual harassment, and abuse.
While there has been steady progress since the Declaration of Shared Commitments was signed in 2017, UN Police has potential to deliver even stronger results to contribute to A4P’s goals.
In this regard, I would like to emphasise four key areas:
UNPOL’s capacity to make a difference by itself is limited. Therefore, the involvement of key stakeholders, including: civil society, the private sector, and other international organizations- such as INTERPOL- is critical to modern police work, not least by facilitating a holistic, and coherent approaches across the entire judicial sector.
Norway encourages all relevant institutions to enhance efforts to lead an inclusive “one-UN” approach to police, justice, and corrections in peace operations.
Second: Member State involvement.
UNPOL depends on Police Contributing Countries. Changes in UN recruitment policy and training programs- as well as the organization of important events, such as UNCOPS- would benefit from a broader consultation with Member States.
Third: Emerging challenges.
Over the past decades, UN peacekeeping has changed in response to new threats. Terrorism and violent extremism- including the nexus with transnational organized crime- require a holistic and transparent criminal justice response.
UN Police, along with other Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions entities, have an important role to play in delivering technical assistance and capacity-building to help host state law enforcement, and core justice institutions address threats while protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Finally, UNPOL can play a critical role in transition contexts.
The move from peacekeeping to peacebuilding must be inclusive, nationally owned, and have a strong focus on protection of civilians- including children- to be successful.
Resolution 2594 on UN transitions, places a particular focus on the need to enhance the States’ capacity to protect their own civilians.
This is an area where UNPOL has a pivotal role to play through training and support.
If you will allow me to conclude with two questions:
Police Commissioner Christine Fossen: What are your thoughts on how to better incorporate the rule of law component in Peace Operations?
A question for USG Lacroix: What measures can DPO take to enhance the work of UN Police against terrorism and organized crime?