Mr. President,

I thank you for organizing this meeting and the speakers for their contributions.

The former President of the Swiss Confederation, Mr. Joseph Deiss, in his capacity as President of the General Assembly, emphasized the role of regional organizations as "platforms for building consensus on global issues at the continental or regional level. Since then, they have repeatedly reaffirmed their importance in the field of conflict prevention and peacekeeping.

Let me highlight three priorities for action:

First, the UN-African Union Joint Framework for a Strengthened Partnership on Peace and Security, including the annual consultations between the two councils, is a "best practice" of a joint approach that promotes closer cooperation. In this regard, Switzerland has supported the High Level Seminar on Peace and Security in Africa since 2015. This has now become a platform for dialogue between the African members of the UN Security Council and those of the African Union Peace and Security Council. More regular exchanges between the two councils, as well as more frequent briefings by representatives of regional organizations, would further facilitate mutual understanding. Closer cooperation should also be sought at the level of Special Envoys. For example, Switzerland calls for close cooperation between the Special Envoys of ASEAN and the UN to promote peace in Myanmar.

Secondly, the capacity of regional organizations to act must be strengthened. Switzerland supports the African Peace and Security Architecture, in particular by supporting the peacekeeping training centers in Ghana, Mali and Kenya, which train hundreds of civilians, police and military personnel every year. The strengthening of regional organizations also depends on the political will of their members to respect their obligations and to collaborate fully with regional organizations. Switzerland deeply regrets that the OSCE, the main multilateral actor in Ukraine since 2014, can no longer ensure its presence on the ground following the Russian military aggression.

Third, peacekeeping requires a comprehensive and coordinated approach. In its role as co-chair, along with South Africa, of the Women, Peace and Security Focal Point Network, Switzerland has implemented this approach by ensuring the inclusion of regional organizations, such as FEMWISE, in the discussions. The UN climate security mechanism should also further engage regional organizations willing to tackle climate change, which is a major threat to peace and stability.

In conclusion, as a member of the Security Council, Switzerland will continue to build bridges between the Council and regional organizations so that they can prevent conflicts and contribute to sustainable peace.

I thank you.