Utilising the full spectrum of peace operations and primacy of politics

Peace operations are delivered by partnerships. All stakeholders involved in peace operations need to continue to provide political support for missions and coordinate with other actors on the ground to support efforts to build and sustain peace. Key recommendations included:

1. Strengthen the senior mission leadership appointment process. The Secretary-General should appoint a panel of former Special Representatives of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and senior mission leaders to identify and appoint future senior mission leaders. The Secretary-General’s efforts to appoint SRSGs and senior mission leaders is politicised by member state interests and has resulted in significant delays.

2. Develop more structured peacekeeping mandates with a focus on strategic objectives. Many existing peacekeeping mandates are cumbersome to interpret, including too many operational details thereby limiting the decision-making and flexibility of the mission leadership team. Security Council members should model new peacekeeping mission mandates on more structured and strategic approaches.

3. Provide political support for women’s engagement in peace processes. Even when there are quotas for women’s engagement in peace processes, women are not always being meaningfully engaged and given an opportunity to influence such processes. The Security Council and field missions should monitor the implementation of these quotas and ensure that women can participate and influence such processes, including by engaging directly with women involved in the relevant process.

4. Identify the actors that are undermining peace operations. The Secretary-General should explicitly identify actors that are undermining the ability of peace operations to carry out their mandates or acting as spoilers to the peace process (e.g. those violating sanctions or deploying mercenaries).

5. Undertake a political economy analysis. The political economy is a driver of peace and conflict. Public financial management is a key element of sustaining peace. Working with country teams and other partners, peace operations should develop an analysis of the political economy and challenges to public financial management in the host country, to understand the long-term drivers of conflict and opportunities to support partners to address them.