Migiro lauds extensive partnership between UN and European Union

12 October 2009
Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro

Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro today highlighted the vital partnership between the United Nations and the European Union (EU) in helping to improve the lives of millions of people around the world, particularly through their support to countries emerging from crises.

Addressing a joint meeting in Brussels of the European Parliament committees on foreign affairs and development, Ms. Migiro noted that the “already solid, varied and extensive” collaboration between the UN and EU ranges from coordination of peacekeeping missions to consultations on conflict prevention.

It includes the exchange of management best practices, staff exchanges and training, European Commission financing of UN humanitarian and development interventions, and consultations on development policy.

It also includes support to countries emerging from natural disasters or man-made conflicts – the subject of a new report entitled “Renewing Hope, Rebuilding Lives.”

“The challenges in such environments are immense, with needs often vastly exceeding capacities and resources,” Ms. Migiro said as she presented its findings.

The report cites, among other elements, European Commission-sponsored UN interventions to enhance communities’ physical security by removing landmines, curbing the circulation of weapons and protecting individuals and groups at risks.

In addition, the UN and EU have worked together to help ex-fighters and those indirectly engaged in combat to return to normal lives and reconcile with their past and with their communities, as well as secured food, nutrition and health for millions of people and worked to create jobs.

At the same time, the report does not minimize the difficulties that countries face as they emerge from crisis, said Ms. Migiro, noting that international support is not always decisive in creating and sustaining stability.

“However, our partnership has been able to improve lives, marginalize spoilers and restore peoples’ hope for a better future, even in those cases where the overall security situation has not greatly improved,” she stated.

Ms. Migiro added that the partnership between the two organizations is premised on the fact that the role of the international community is to support national actors to take back the reins of their own development as soon as they can.

In more general terms, she said Europe has always been a strong advocate of international solutions to international problems, and of global frameworks in which all countries have a say in identifying the appropriate solutions.

“The European Union has repeatedly stated its commitment to building an effective multilateralism with a strong United Nations at its core, and it has backed this commitment both politically and financially,” she stated.

Ms. Migiro is on a two-nation trip that also included a stop in Geneva.


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