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Statement on MINUSMA by An Tánaiste Simon Coveney

Statement by An Tánaiste Simon Coveney,

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade,

on Mali and MINUSMA

11 June 2020

 The UN Security Council meets today to consider the current situation in Mali, ahead of the renewal of the mandate for the UN’s peacekeeping mission to the country, MINUSMA.   

MINUSMA has made significant contributions to efforts to support peace and to address tensions and violence in Mali.  I want to acknowledge the Government of Mali, and all signatories, for their continuing efforts to implement the agreement for peace and reconciliation in Mali. Ireland welcomes too the progress made with regards the ongoing efforts to ensure women are meaningfully participating in the political process.  The challenges of COVID-19 should not pause or impede these efforts and I urge all parties to continue dialogue and co-operation to ensure that progress does not lose momentum.

It is recognised, however, that the situation remains fragile and an ongoing commitment to secure the safety and protection of civilians is needed. MINUSMA is one key part of that. The EU Training Mission in Mali however is also supporting the restoration of state control throughout the country by training and advising Malian forces. Increasing the capacity of Malian security forces to protect their citizens and to uphold the rule of law will help ensure a sustainable peace. Ireland is an active contributor to both missions, reflecting our commitment to Mali and to regional stability and peace. Continued coordination and enhancing cooperation between these missions will greatly increase the chances of peace. 

Ireland’s unbroken record of over sixty years of continuous peacekeeping has not been altered by the global pandemic. Rather, the current health crisis has served to reinforce for us the importance of collective commitment. This is why I want to take this opportunity to reaffirm Ireland’s commitment to the securing of peace in Mali and to reassure that supporting MINUSMA remains a priority for Ireland.

For Ireland, the United Nations brings together individual states to combine our efforts and strengths, to enable a collective progression along a path of peace. That concept of collective responsibility underpins Ireland’s work, and peacekeeping, as the concrete expression of that concept, is at the core of our foreign policy. 

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