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U.S. Department of State Statement on the Brahimi Report On U.N. Peacekeeping Reform, 2000

Speaker: Rick Boucher
Published August 23, 2000

U.S. Department of State Spokesman Richard Boucher gave this statement on the Brahimi Report on UN Peacekeeping Reform on August 23, 2000.

The Brahimi Report on U.N. Peacekeeping Reform is a major new study on U.N. Peace and Peacekeeping Operations. The United States commends the panel's work to strengthen the United Nations' ability to conduct peacekeeping operations, and will carefully review its recommendations.

On March 7, 2000, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed an independent blue-ribbon panel of ten experts on U.N. peace operations led by Ambassador Lakhdar Brahimi of Algeria. Annan called upon the "Brahimi Panel" to make frank, specific and realistic recommendations for change in U.N. peace operations.

The panel released its findings August 23. The roughly 70 page document with approximately 60 specific recommendations calls for improvements across the board, including doctrine, strategy, planning, decision-making, headquarters organization and staffing levels, logistics, rapid deployment, and public information.

The United States has been one of the earliest and most insistent voices calling for improvement in planning, the pace of deployment, and overall effectiveness in peacekeeping. We and other U.N. members have been very concerned about the mismatch between the U.N.'s burgeoning peacekeeping roles -- in Kosovo, East Timor, Lebanon, Congo, Sierra Leone, and soon  Ethiopia/Eritrea -- and its limited ability to plan for and manage those operations. The U.N.'s Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) needs more staff, strengthened planning capacity, streamlined logistical structure, more flexible financing and the ability to move resources into the field in real time.

Our initial perception is the report accurately reflects our main concerns about U.N. peacekeeping operations. We intend to work closely with the U.N. Secretariat and other Member States in the coming months to review the report's recommendations and develop specific plans for implementation. We expect the report to be given serious and expeditious consideration by the Secretariat, Security Council, and General Membership.

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