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Kuwait urges UNSC to exercise its mandate to tackle conflicts   

Kuwait News Agency - 12 January, 2017

Kuwait envoy to the United Nations called on the UN Security Council to shoulder its responsibilities for ending the conflicts around the globe, particularly in the Middle East, expressing support to the UN Secretary-General's vision for preventive diplomacy.

Abdulaziz Al-Jarallah, charge d'affaires of the permanent mission of the State of Kuwait to the UN, recalled that more than 128 million people around the globe were currently affected by conflicts, displacement and other emergencies. Al-Jarallah was addressing the UNSC open debate on "the Maintenance of International Peace and Security: Conflict Prevention and Sustaining Peace." "Today's debate was an opportunity to work towards making 2017 a year for peace," he said.

Calling for creative solutions to today's complicated conflicts, in line with the principles of preventive diplomacy, he said the international community should learn from the lessons of the past. "The Security Council, in particular, must shoulder its responsibility to prevent conflicts, and not simply respond to them after they erupt," he stressed. He cited the Palestinian question, which had remained on the Council's agenda for seven decades, and the ongoing Syrian conflict as two examples of the Council's inability to end conflicts.

The humanitarian appeal, launched by the UN for raising USD 2.22 billion for relief effort in 2017, represents an all-time record high and signals the depth of the crisis facing the international community, he went on.

The efforts being made by the UN so far to prevent conflicts are still below the expectations for sustainable peace.

Over the last 70 years the Security Council failed to reach a fair and mutually-acceptable settlement to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and failed to settle the Syrian crisis that entered its sixth year and claimed more than 400,000 lives, he regretted.

Al-Jarallah urged adoption of an innovative and more comprehensive approach to tackling the armed conflicts taking into account the social and economic causes of conflicts such a poverty, unemployment, social injustice and human rights abuses.

It is crucial to remove all hurdles to the Secretary-General's use of Article 99 of the UN Charter which entitles the UN chief to alert the Security Council members to any threat to the international peace and security, he said.

Article VII of the UN Charter sets clear-cut rules for resolving the conflicts peacefully before resorting to force to end the conflicts, he pointed out.

Al-Jarallah highlighted the need of providing the necessary resources for the UN Secretary General and the Secretariat to enhance their early-warning capabilities in order to adopt the preventive measures in collaboration with regional organizations and partners.

It's also of crucial importance to realize the targets of sustainable socio-economic development which represents a prerequisite for stability and sustainable peace, he noted.

He affirmed that Kuwait is looking forward to working closely with the new UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for promoting peace and security in the Middle East and the world at large.

Guterres has delivered his first address to the Security Council open debate where he emphasized that more must be done to prevent war and sustain peace, saying: "People are paying too high a price," he said. "You, the Member States, are paying too high a price. We need a whole new approach."
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