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Fourth Committee General Debate on Agenda item 49: “Comprehensive review of special political missions”

Friday, 04 November 2022
H.E. MR. ANTONIO M. LAGDAMEO, Ambassador and Permanent Representative, Philippine Permanent Mission to the United Nations
Conference Room 4


Mr. Chairman,

The Philippines aligns itself with the Statements delivered by Indonesia on behalf of ASEAN, and by Morocco on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

It is clear that UN special political missions or SPMs continue to serve as “forward platforms for conflict prevention,” consistent with the UN Charter-based obligation to “save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.”

For over 30 years, special political missions have grown significantly in number, size and the complexity of the mandates they are asked to implement, a reflection of the growing importance that Member States attach to this important instrument.

We wish to put forward the following points for today’s interactive dialogue on special political missions:

  • First, the Philippines believes that a special political mission is not merely a tool for managing short-term crises, but rather an approach to sustaining peace in the long-term.

SPMs are part and parcel of the Secretary-General’s vision to achieve greater coherence in promoting a “peace continuum” in UN Peace Operations.

Currently, SPMs give greater attention to conflict prevention and mediation, and continue to push for inclusive participation of key stakeholders at the onset of the mission.

  • Second, the Philippines supports the efforts of regional or sub-regional organizations to deploy peacekeeping operations authorized by the Security Council under Chapter VIII of the UN Charter. We also need to enhance the predictability and sustainability of financing regional organizations when they undertake peacekeeping under a Security Council mandate.
  • Third, in the ASEAN context, one entry point for SPMs is to consider greater collaboration in terms of exchange of best practices through the Plan of Action to Implement the Joint Declaration on Comprehensive Partnership between ASEAN and the United Nations, 2021-2025.

Under Political-Security Cooperation, the Plan of Action calls for development of “effective partnerships and closer cooperation for sustaining peace, confidence building measures, preventive diplomacy,” among others, through capacity building activities and exchange of information, best practices and lessons learned through a voluntary and non-binding basis with relevant ASEAN mechanisms and arrangements such as the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), and collaboration with the ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation (ASEAN-IPR).

  • Fourth, another window of opportunity for strengthening partnership of SPMs with regional and sub-regional organizations is the appointment of more women to senior leadership positions, particularly as Special Representatives and Envoys in UN Missions and Country Teams.
  • Finally, the Philippines continues to support the recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) on measures to improve SPMs’ funding and backstopping arrangements, including the establishment of a special account for SPMs by providing them with their own budgetary solution, and therefore enhancing their capacity to deliver on their mandates.

Mr. Chair,

The Philippines supports close cooperation among the UN, regional organizations such as ASEAN and the African Union, and sub-regional organizations to advance international peace and security as one of the fundamental pillars of the United Nations.

Thank you.  END