In recognition of the multifaceted and universal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s joint (virtual) session of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) focused on fostering global solidarity and conflict-sensitive responses to the socioeconomic impacts of the pandemic on development and peacebuilding efforts.
To support Member States in their preparations for the discussion, QUNO shared a messages document with diplomats and UN colleagues ahead of the joint session that reflected on challenges and opportunities faced by the international community in building back better from crisis, especially in countries most affected by conflict. In the meeting itself, QUNO was the only NGO on the list of speakers in the interactive dialogue segment.
QUNO’s statement reflected on how more efforts are needed to align crisis response with long-term plans for peacebuilding and development through a focus on peace, justice, and inclusion. Attention was brought to the need to mainstream peace in the response to COVID-19 and for Member States to support allocating 5% of COVID-19 funding to ensure that response efforts are conflict sensitive in their design, implementation and monitoring. QUNO’s document also noted that inclusion needs to be prioritized in analysis and action. as the meaningful participation of women and girls, youth and local communities is an essential piece of effective and long-lasting peacebuilding efforts. The statement also noted the impact of systemic patterns of exclusion at times of crisis, and the need to protect civic space.
QUNO looks forward to continuing its engagement with the PBC and ECOSOC to support sustainable peacebuilding efforts and finding ways to align crisis response with long-term peace and development needs.