Canada to host United Nations Peacebuilding Fund conference in January 2021
On November 2, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres called on UN member states to support the Peacebuilding Fund.
Guterres stated: “I call on every Member State to make a voluntary contribution to the Peacebuilding Fund, reflecting our mutual recognition that peacebuilding and sustaining peace are core mandates of our Organization, and are inseparable from sustainable development recovery, particularly in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The UN media release on this highlighted: “During the pandemic, Fund projects have supported the protection of female health personnel, women leaders and human rights defenders in Colombia.”
It also notes: “The Peacebuilding Fund is seeking $180 million for this year, and demands are outpacing resources.”
The Chair of the UN Peacebuilding Commission is Bob Rae, the recently appointed Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations.
On November 3, this Government of Canada media release noted: “The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today announced that Canada will co-host the UN Peacebuilding Fund (Fund) Replenishment Conference in January 2021.”
“The conference aims to support the UN Secretary General’s funding appeal for the Fund, securing predictable and sustained commitments for the duration of its strategy (2020-24).”
That media release adds: “The 2021 conference will be co-hosted by the UN Secretary-General, Canada, and other Fund leaders to be identified at a later date.”
Given the reference made by the United Nations media release about the role the Fund has played in protecting defenders in Colombia, Peace Brigades International-Canada will be following this conference with interest given the increased dangers faced by defenders this year during the pandemic.