Need for “global solidarity” never more clear in UN history, SRSG Tanin tells the Security Council
21 October 2020 - In the United Nations’ 75-year history the need for global solidarity and international cooperation has never been as clearly demonstrated as it is today, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNMIK told the Security Council.
“For places such as Kosovo – still suffering the consequences of past conflict – cooperation, unity of political voice and vision; dialogue and preventing extreme polarization; should be highest order priorities,” SRSG Zahir Tanin emphasised in his regular update on Kosovo today.
During the past seven months Kosovo had persevered through multiple, overlapping challenges, triggered by the ongoing worldwide pandemic, he said. Severe socio-economic consequences of COVID-19 had created a negative impact on the economy, particularly affecting youth, women and vulnerable communities – with the educational and psychological fallout already being felt.
However, SRSG Tanin commended the work of the Kosovo healthcare system and frontline health workers, in particular, for “[working] heroically to make the best use of limited resources”.
“We in UNMIK, alongside the UN Kosovo Team of Agencies, Funds and Programmes, have also significantly adapted our activities to help meet the unprecedented challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our focus has been on providing direct support to people, institutions and communities,” he said.
Solidarity, especially during the pandemic, should focus on finding the difficult balance between public health, economic recovery, and human rights; “a conundrum presently defying governments the world over”.
SRSG Tanin also briefed the Council on the advancement of the investigative and judicial processes of the Kosovo Specialist Prosecutor’s Office and Specialist Chambers, describing them as “integral parts of the Kosovo justice system, with mandates crucial to Kosovo’s rule of law aspirations”.
He urged leaders to redouble efforts to counter misinformation, and to ensure Prosecution and Chambers proceedings received the unambiguous institutional and political support essential for strengthening the rule of law and long-term stability in Kosovo.
SRSG Tanin commended Pristina and Belgrade and the respective efforts of the EU and the U.S. government to advance the negotiation process.
“The recent meetings in Brussels and Washington demonstrate the potential for progress when international resources are combined with leadership on the ground to move difficult issues forward.”
Political unity, strong commitment and good will among leaders in Pristina and Belgrade were a prerequisite for negotiations to succeed, he said, expressing hope both sides would overcome disputed issues and find common ground to reach a comprehensive agreement.
Recognising another important anniversary, SRSG Tanin noted this year marked 20 years since the adoption of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) on Women, Peace and Security. The importance of women’s meaningful participation in the peace process at all levels, particularly in the ongoing dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, was “central to achieving results and helps to ensure that they correspond to the real needs of people,” he said.
SRSG Tanin concluded his remarks by reiterating UNMIK’s unqualified commitment to supporting the EU-facilitated dialogue and the efforts of leaders on both sides to move decisively towards a comprehensive agreement and long-term peace and reconciliation.
Read the full statement of SRSG Tanin here.
Read the SG report here.
For more information please contact:
Ms. Sanam Dolatshahi, Spokesperson, UNMIK