India ensured concerns of all 15 UNSC members taken on board on outcome documents from signature Presidency events: Ambassador TS Tirumurti

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August 24, 2021 10:30 AM

The country held three signature events during its Presidency on the topics of maritime security, peacekeeping and counter-terrorism, with ''significant outcome documents'' emerging out of each of the three events.

TS TirumurtiTirumurti noted that he is ''happy that all the three (signature) events were extremely successful.'' (Photo source: IE)

India adopted a “consultative approach” in working on the ”significant” outcome documents that emerged from the signature events of its Security Council Presidency to ensure that needs and concerns of all 15 members of the UN body are taken on board and that these would also provide tangible benefits to the United Nations in the field, India’s envoy here said. India’s Presidency of the powerful UN Security Council for the month of August will end in a week.

The country held three signature events during its Presidency on the topics of maritime security, peacekeeping and counter-terrorism, with ”significant outcome documents” emerging out of each of the three events. ”There were significant outcome documents which emerged out of the three signature events. We had started our preparations right from the time we entered the Council. We first engaged in extensive discussions with the relevant UN agencies to ensure that the documents that emerged out of these events were focussed and would provide tangible benefits to the UN in the field,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador T S Tirumurti told PTI in an interview.

”We adopted a consultative approach in working on these documents to ensure that the needs and concerns of all 15 members of the Security Council are taken on board. Having such a consultative process does take time, but ultimately it led to substantial results which also had the unanimous support of all the members of the Security Council. This is our strength and everyone appreciated the inclusive nature of our consultations,” he said. Tirumurti noted that he is ”happy that all the three (signature) events were extremely successful.”

He termed the August 9 event on maritime security presided over by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as ”path breaking” in many ways since this was the first time the Prime Minister of India chaired the Security Council. ”Further this was the first time when we had a comprehensive debate on the holistic concept of Maritime Security and what it entails,” Tirumurti said adding that there was also a Presidential Statement on Maritime Security which incidentally was also the first Presidential Statement on the concept.

”The Presidential Statement deals with important issues relating to Maritime Security, including the place of UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea) in Maritime Security, freedom of navigation, terrorism, especially at sea like Mumbai attacks, trafficking in arms, drugs and humans, the place of regional and sub-regional organisations in this context, piracy.”

The event, which itself saw high-level participation from Heads of States and Governments & Foreign Ministers, showed the high importance which the Council members attached to the issue of Maritime Security, Tirumurti said. Several other non-Council members also gave written statements.

”Overall, our holding signature event on a very important topic was highly appreciated given the complexities of this topic and the ability of our delegation to bring together different views on a single consensus text.’ External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar chaired the two other signature events on Peacekeeping and Technology on August 18 and the briefing on ISIL/Da’esh on August 19. Tirumurti underlined that the event on peacekeeping showcased India’s strong commitment to peacekeeping, besides reflecting our age-old tradition in this field.

India exchanged an MoU with the UN in support of the ‘Partnership for Technology in Peacekeeping’ initiative and to UN C4ISR Academy. Highlighting the several ”historic firsts” that India achieved through this event as well, he said for the first time, India drafted a resolution on peacekeeping focused on ensuring accountability for crimes against peacekeepers. The resolution was sponsored by 80 member states, including all 15 members of the Security Council, ”which is not often seen in the Security Council. Also for the first time, the Security Council held an Open Debate focused exclusively on how technology can aid in peacekeeping and for the first time, the Security Council adopted a Presidential Statement on the topic of technology and peacekeeping,” he said.

Following the August 19 ministerial level briefing on ISIL/Da’esh, the Council unanimously issued a press statement that reiterated that they condemn in the strongest terms all instances of terrorism and noted with concern that ISIL (Da’esh) could regain the ability to launch or orchestrate international terrorist attacks.

”The members of the Security Council also came together to agree on a press statement which sent out a key message that, as far as terrorism is concerned, the Security Council is united. There was also a clear reference to the regional affiliates of ISIL, including ISIL Khorasan,” Tirumurti said.

In the press statement, the Council members had deplored the continuous attacks on civilians, towns and military camps by ISIL’s regional affiliates such as IS in West Africa Province (ISWAP), IS in Greater Sahara (ISGS), and ISIL in Central Africa, and expressed concern over the presence of, and threat from ISIL-Khorasan.

During the “busy month? of India’s Council Presidency, there have been meetings on several issues, including Syria, Lebanon, Somalia, Myanmar and Yemen. Later this month, there will be discussions on Iraq, Ethiopia and the Middle East Peace Process. The Security Council also issued several outcome documents this month, including two Presidential Statements on the drawdown of the Mission in Darfur UNAMID and on UNOWAS in West Africa and Sahel? besides the press statements on Afghanistan.

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