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Support to the Sahel region (E/2020/L.3)

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2020 session
25 July 2019–22 July 2020
Agenda item 12
Coordination, programme and other questions

Burkina Faso, Chad, Colombia, Denmark, France, Gambia, Germany, India, Japan, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Norway, Republic of Korea, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sudan and Togo: draft resolution

The Economic and Social Council,

Recalling its resolutions 2009/32 of 31 July 2009, 2011/43 of 29 July 2011 and 2019/15 of 8 July 2019,

Recognizing that development, peace, security and human rights are interlinked and mutually reinforcing,

Recalling that the Sustainable Development Goals and targets are integrated and indivisible, global in nature and universally applicable, taking into account different national realities, capacities and levels of development and respecting national policies and priorities,

Recalling also the joint meetings of the Economic and Social Council and the Peacebuilding Commission on the themes “Linkages between climate change and challenges to peacebuilding and sustaining peace in the Sahel” and “The situation in the Sahel”, held in New York on 13 November 2018 and 28 June 2017, respectively,

  1. Acknowledges the serious humanitarian, security and development challenges facing the Sahel region

  2. Stresses the importance of adequately addressing the economic, social and environmental challenges and the humanitarian situation in the region, which is characterized by, inter alia, extreme poverty, food insecurity, forced displacement and social inequalities, and calls for humanitarian assistance, in line with General Assembly resolution 46/182 of 19 December 1991, and development assistance, in line with Assembly resolutions 71/243 of 21 December 2016 and 72/279 of 31 May 2018;

  3. Recognizes the adverse effects of climate change, ecological changes and natural disasters, including through drought, desertification, land degradation and food insecurity, on the development of the Sahel region, and continues to stress the need for long-term strategies by Governments and the United Nations to build resilience, and encourages them to continue to integrate this information into their activities;

  4. Stresses the importance of national and regional ownership, as well as good governance, and commends the growing leadership of the countries of the region and of regional and subregional organizations, including the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States and the Group of Five for the Sahel, in addressing the multidimensional challenges in the Sahel region;

  5. Takes note of the collective efforts of the United Nations towards recalibrating the United Nations integrated strategy for the Sahel and developing the United Nations Support Plan for the Sahel to expedite its impact, calls upon relevant entities of the United Nations system to support its effective implementation, in accordance with their respective mandates and in line with the needs of the people in the Sahel region and national and regional priorities, and encourages close collaboration with partners as well as countries of the region to ensure that the international response to the situation in the Sahel is aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Agenda 2063 of the African Union, the Paris Agreement, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–20303 and the security and development strategy of the Group of Five for the Sahel;

  6. Stresses the need for strengthening collective and integrated engagement across the Sahel region, in line with existing frameworks, including the Group of Five for the Sahel Priority Investment Programme and the African Union Strategy for the Sahel Region, and in this regard welcomes the strengthened cooperation between the United Nations and the African Union, including under the African Union-United Nations Framework for the Implementation of Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;

  7. Recognizes that the multidimensional challenges in the Sahel have a disproportionate impact on women and youth, and encourages Member States, including the countries in the Sahel region, and entities of the United Nations system, in accordance with their mandates, to support as a matter of priority the empowerment of women, including effective participation and decision-making in political, social and economic life, and to create opportunities for women and youth, particularly those in rural, borderland and underserved regions, consistent with national and regional priorities;

  8. Calls upon the Secretary-General, relevant organs and bodies of the United Nations, international financial institutions, the African Union and other regional and subregional organizations and other relevant actors, such as the Sahel Alliance, to continue to assist the countries of the Sahel region through better coordinated and effective support, including through continued effective development assistance, in conformity with national and regional priorities and policies, including the promotion of capacity-building and institution-building in order to lay a solid foundation for long-term sustainable development and peace;

  9. Recalls the importance of close, strategic, coordinated and operational partnerships among Governments, the relevant organs and bodies of the United Nations, such as the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel, international financial institutions, regional and subregional actors, the private sector and civil society in implementing local, national, cross-border and regional initiatives to achieve sustainable development and peace in the Sahel region;

  10. Stresses the importance of safeguarding core social expenditures in the Sahel, including for health, education, nutrition and access to clean water, as well as for basic infrastructure, such as energy, to strengthen social and economic development, in line with national priorities, despite the increasing burden on the national budgets of the countries in the region to address their security challenges;

  11. Also stresses the importance of supporting the resident coordinators and the United Nations country teams in the Sahel region, in line with General Assembly resolution 72/279, to ensure the enhanced coordination and impact of United Nations development activities in supporting the national Governments in the Sahel to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals;

  12. Calls upon the entities of the United Nations development system, in line with General Assembly resolution 72/279, to strengthen capacities, resources and skill sets to support national Governments, including in the Sahel region, in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and, where relevant, build their capacities and expertise to promote progress on those Goals lagging behind, in line with respective mandates and building on comparative advantages, and reducing gaps, overlaps and duplication across entities;

  13. Requests United Nations funds and programmes, including the United Nations Development Programme, and specialized agencies to pay particular attention to the coordination and impact of their activities in the Sahel region, in line with General Assembly resolution 72/279;

  14. Welcomes the use by the Peacebuilding Commission of its platform to sustain international attention on the Sahel region, and invites it, in its advisory role to the Economic and Social Council, to further continue such efforts by mobilizing deeper commitment and partnership among Member States, the United Nations system and regional and international partners, including international financial institutions and regional and subregional organizations, for the effective implementation of the United Nations integrated strategy for the Sahel and the United Nations Support Plan for the Sahel;

  15. Requests the Secretary-General to include a section on the implementation of the present resolution, including on how the United Nations system is implementing integrated, coherent and coordinated support to achieve sustainable development in the Sahel region, consistent with national and regional priorities and in line with General Assembly resolution 72/279, within existing reporting obligations to the Economic and Social Council at its 2020 session under the agenda item entitled “Coordination, programme and other questions”, and decides to include in the provisional agenda of its 2021 session, under the item entitled “Coordination, programme and other questions”, a sub-item entitled “Sustainable development in the Sahel”;

  16. Decides to consider this matter at its 2020 session under the agenda item entitled “Coordination, programme and other questions”.