On June 29, Quaker Representative Kavita Desai spoke to a joint meeting of the UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and the UN Peacebuilding Commission. At the meeting, convened under the title of “The importance of the Sustainable Development Goals in linking peace and development on the ground”, Kavita pointed to the daily realities of communities on the ground. Kavita noted that “the vision set out by the 2030 agenda, of a world where all can thrive, live in dignity, in safety and free from want, has great potential to sustain peace, but remains out of reach on the ground.” You can watch the full meeting here, Kavita’s statement begins at 02:08:46.
The statement drew from recent meetings that QUNO & the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) have co-hosted, bringing the realities of those living in poverty and with the threat of violence to UN Headquarters. Kavita emphasized that there is a critical need to invest in strategies that prevent violent conflict by strengthening local systems and mechanisms, to lift up local experiences. Furthermore, the statement highlighted the importance of implementing Sustainable Development Goal 16 – the peace goal - and the need to reinvigorate response systems to reflect emerging challenges such as climate change.
Throughout the meeting, diplomats, speaking on behalf of UN Member States, emphasized the need for peacebuilding efforts to be fully funded so that root cause of violent conflict can be tackled.
QUNO welcomed the opportunity to participate in such an important meeting and looks forward to continuing to engage with Member States, the UN, and civil society colleagues to help accelerate the successful implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.