"Scale and intensity" of conflict demands peacekeeping reform says UN chief

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The UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) conducts a training exercise in riot control for its peacekeepers in Juba. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

The "scale and intensity" of modern conflicts, means that UN peacekeeping operations have to undergo major reform.

That's the view of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who briefed the Security Council on his new peacekeeping recommendations on Friday.

He said the Council needed to play a bigger role to help strengthen the whole peacekeeping system.

Veronica Reeves reports.

Mr Ban identified three areas where reform was needed and where the Security Council could take an enhanced role, as the UN body which deploys peacekeepers on the ground.

Greater political engagement was needed to help prevent conflicts from growing, peacekeeping operations needed better mandates, and the Council needed to work better with partners like the African Union.

He said existing operations were not responding fast enough, or effectively enough to today's complex challenges.

"We need your engagement when things do not go well. Where UN peace operations have a mandate to protect civilians, they must use all tools, including, where necessary, the use of force. But this does not replace the search for political settlements; it makes your engagement more critical."

In return for asking more from the Security Council, he promised better and more regular support from the UN Secretariat. With the ultimate goal of peacebuilding, and protecting civilians in conflict areas, he said that working together, the UN could find what he called, "durable paths of peace."

Veronica Reeves, United Nations.

Duration: 1’06″

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