Media Remarks following South Africa's election to the Non-Permanent Seat in the UN Security Council, 8 June 2018
Members of the media,
We wish to express our sincere appreciation to the Member States of the UN General Assembly for supporting South Africa's candidacy for the non-permanent seat on the Security Council for the period 2019-2020. We are honoured and humbled by this gesture of confidence.
As you will know, this will be South Africa's third term on the UN Security Council, having previously served in 2007-2008 and 2011-2012. Our tenure in the Security Council will be dedicated to the legacy of President Nelson Mandela and his commitment to peace. In marking his centenary this year, a Summit on Peace will be held on the eve of the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly in September.
South Africa will use its tenure in the Security Council to promote the maintenance of international peace and security through advocating for the peaceful settlement of disputes and inclusive dialogue. We will continue to enhance close cooperation between the UN Security Council and other regional and sub-regional organisations. During our two previous tenures, we advocated for closer cooperation between the UN Security Council and the African Union Security Council (AUPC), which culminated in the adoption of the landmark Resolution in 2012 on strengthening cooperation between these two bodies.
South Africa's diplomatic efforts over the past two decades include conflict resolution, prevention, mediation, peacekeeping and peacebuilding. We firmly believe that, while we must strengthen the tools at the Security Council's disposal in addressing conflicts as they arise, the focus should be on preventative diplomacy and on addressing the root causes of conflicts.
We believe that peace cannot be achieved without the participation of women in peace negotiations, peacekeeping operations, post-conflict peace-building and governance. During our tenure, we will ensure that a gender perspective is mainstreamed into all Security Council resolutions in line with UNSC Resolution 1325 (2000) on Women, Peace and Security.
As we assume the non-permanent seat, we look forward to collaborating with the members of the Security Council in promoting the maintenance of international peace and security and the social well-being and advancement of all the peoples of the world.
We are guided by the Resolution of the AU to ‘Silence the Guns’ by 2020. Only when we have peace and a culture of peace, can we have sustainable development and we in Africa need that and resources most. Our energies now have to be directed at the betterment of the lives of our people.
ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION
OR Tambo Building
460 Soutpansberg Road