General Affairs Council
June 11, 2001


EU-UN co-operation in conflict prevention and crisis management
- Conclusions -

The Council underlines the commitment of the EU as well as of its Member States to contribute to the objectives of the UN in conflict prevention and crisis management, noting the United Nations' primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. The Swedish Presidency has taken forward the mandate given to it by the Nice European Council to identify possible areas and modalities for co-operation with the UN in crisis management.

The Council reaffirms its determination to develop and strengthen co-operation in the areas of crisis management and conflict prevention, following ministers' discussions with the UN Secretary-General in May.

The co-operation should develop progressively in close co-ordination with the UN, focusing on substantive issues and concrete needs. It will increase in scope and importance as the ESDP evolves.

The Council acknowledges the need for an integrated approach to conflict prevention and crisis management, encompassing also development co-operation and other measures addressing root causes of conflict, and in this context welcomes the important communications on conflict prevention and on building an effective partnership with the UN in the field of development and humanitarian affairs - recently presented by the Commission. On the latter, the Council also recalls its conclusions of 31 May 2001. Furthermore the Council notes the intention of the Commission to launch a dialogue with the UN on exchanging its Country Strategy Papers with the UN Common Country Assessments.

Specific themes and areas of co-operation

Contacts with the UN Secretariat have identified themes and areas for EU-UN co-operation. The Council endorses the following specific themes and areas as the focus of the EUs efforts to intensify interaction with the UN. They include:

1. Conflict prevention, in particular ensuring mutually reinforcing approaches; exchange of information and analyses concerning on-going and potential crises; co-operation on fact-finding; co-ordination of diplomatic activity and messages, including consultations between Special Representatives; field co-ordination and training; increased co-operation in electoral assistance and election monitoring.

2. Civilian and military aspects of crisis management, in particular ensuring that EU's evolving military and civilian capacities provide real added value for the UN, i.a. by enhancing compatibility of training standards for civilian crisis management personnel, and exchange of information on questions related to the planning and implementation of crisis management; co-ordination in the field.

3. Particular regional issues, Western Balkans, Middle East and Africa, in particular the Great Lakes, Horn of Africa and West Africa, will be for the time being the priority areas of reinforced co-operation between the EU and the UN.

Modalities for EU-UN co-operation

The following arrangements will provide a platform for the intensified co-operation by facilitating guidance, continuity and coherence at all levels:

i) EU Ministerial meetings, where appropriate in Troika format, with the UN Secretary-General;

ii) Meetings and contacts between the Secretary-General/High Representative and External Relations Commissioner with the UN Secretary-General and UN Deputy Secretary-General;

iii) Political and Security Committee meetings, where appropriate in Troika format, with the UN Deputy Secretary-General and Under Secretaries-General; and other levels and formats as appropriate;

iv) Contacts of the Council Secretariat and the Commission services with the UN Secretariat at the appropriate levels.

The Council requests the Presidency assisted by the Secretary-General/High Representative, and the Commission, drawing on EU Heads of Missions in New York, as appropriate, to pursue discussions with the UN with a view to implementing practical forms for co-operation to be reported to the Council.

The Council agrees that the Presidency will convey the content of these Council conclusions in a letter to the UN Secretary-General.

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