Priorities for the 2021 Peacekeeping Ministerial: Reflections from an Expert Roundtable

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The Republic of Korea will host the next United Nations Peacekeeping Ministerial Conference in April 2021. In the context of the secretary-general’s Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) initiative, the objective of the 2021 ministerial is to strengthen UN peacekeeping, in part by improving the performance and impact of UN peacekeeping operations, closing capability gaps through concrete pledges, facilitating new partnerships and strengthening existing ones, and promoting systemic changes that will improve operations.

The ministerial will also be a forum for member states to reaffirm their commitment to peacekeeping and highlight concrete progress in implementing the Declaration of Shared Commitments and other reform initiatives. Past ministerials have highlighted progress on related issues, such as the women, peace, and security agenda; protection and performance; partnerships; and safety and security.

To provide early input into planning, this expert-level roundtable identified potential themes and outcomes for the ministerial and preparatory meetings, including areas that would benefit from in-depth, concrete analysis. The meeting focused on eight issues: (1) protection of civilians (POC); (2) safety and security; (3) technology; (4) performance; (5) training and capacity building; (6) women, peace, and security (WPS); (7) conduct of UN peacekeepers; and (8) sustaining peace, including during peacekeeping transitions. The roundtable brought together representatives of the co-chairs of the ministerial, the UN Secretariat, and relevant civil society organizations and think tanks.