In an increasingly polarised world, with intractable and protracted crises and conflicts posing serious obstacles to peace and development, the UN Security Council struggles to meet its primary responsibility for maintenance of international peace and security. While composed of five permanent members with veto right, alongside 10 countries elected for two-year terms, all UN Member States are obliged to comply with the Council’s decisions. Given its composition and the current geopolitical landscape, what can we expect the Council to achieve and what could influence its effectiveness in fulfilling its mandate? What tools can and will the Council use to find solutions to the crises currently on its agenda, including those in Syria, Myanmar and Venezuela?
In this seminar, two experts with first-hand experience of the work of the Council shared their insights into its way of operating. They discussed trends and priorities within the work of the Council; what issues are dealt with most successfully, comparing thematic processes with conflict-specific efforts; and where there are entry-points for civil society to engage.
- Karin Landgren is the Executive Director of Security Council Report, a New York based independent and impartial organisation that works to advance the transparency and effectiveness of the Security Council. Ms. Landgren served with the UN for over 35 years and is the first woman to have headed three UN peace operations mandated by the Security Council.
- Efraim Gomez, Head of UN Policy Department of the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, including in 2017-2018 when Sweden was a non-permanent member to the Council.
Moderator: Henrik Hammargren, Executive Director, the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation
The seminar was the first in a series of #UNtalks, jointly organised by the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation and UNDP Sweden with the aim to contribute to critical reflection and deeper understanding of the role and work of the United Nations.