Canada has a long and proud history of peacekeeping. For decades, brave Canadian women and men have put themselves in harm’s way to protect the world’s most vulnerable civilians – including women, children, and marginalized groups.
Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan was at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York, today to launch the 2017 UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial. The conference will be held in Vancouver, British Columbia, on November 14-15. Approximately 500 delegates from 70 countries are expected to participate in the discussions.
Building on the successes of previous events held in New York and London, the 2017 UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial will review current contributions by UN members, and most importantly, secure pledges to meet the current and future needs of UN peacekeeping operations.
During his visit, the Minister also met with UN Under-Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix, UN Under-Secretary General for Field Support Atul Khare, Canada’s Ambassador to the UN Marc-André Blanchard, and representatives of the ten countries co-hosting this year’s Defence Ministerial. Canada hopes that these co-hosts will play a key role leading up to the conference, by chairing meetings to identify and prepare key deliverables for the 2017 Ministerial.
“Canada is doing its part to make the world a more peaceful and prosperous place for everyone. And we are committed to increasing our engagement in peace support operations. The 2017 UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial is one component of our engagement with the UN and I look forward to welcoming defence counterparts to Canada later this year.”
Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan
• Ten countries will serve as co-hosts for the 2017 UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Japan, Netherlands, Pakistan, Rwanda, Uruguay, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Co-hosts will work closely with Canada and the UN to organize meetings to prepare the ground for the Ministerial.
• On November 14, Canada will host a series of events called “Focus on Peacekeeping”. While not a part of the official conference, these events will complement the Ministerial, they will be geared towards a broad audience, and will explore several different themes to underline the importance of a comprehensive approach to peacekeeping.
• On November 15, four plenary sessions will be held on:
Integration of gender perspectives into peacekeeping: How to empower women, and take gender perspectives into account in all aspects of peacekeeping, to achieve better results on the ground.
Innovation in training and capacity building: How to strengthen partnerships between UN, troop- and police-contributing countries, and other actors, to improve outcomes of peacekeeping operations.
Protecting those at risk: How to ensure that high-level strategies align with the realities on the ground, while acknowledging that the success of UN peacekeeping should be measured by its impact on those we seek to protect.
Early warning and rapid deployment: How to better identify and analyze emerging conflicts, while making sure key decision makers are informed in a timely manner so they can plan their response more quickly. During the Ministerial, Member States will also provide new pledges to meet the UN's rapid deployment requirement for 2017-18.
Today, Canada is active in a number of United Nations peace support operations, including those in Haiti, South Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cyprus and the Middle East.