Nikki Haley speaking at the United Nations
Nikki Haley speaking at the United Nations Reuters

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Wednesday spoke at a UN Security Council open debate on peacekeeping, emphasizing the importance of clear benchmarks for success and calling for shared responsibility and shared costs for peacekeeping among member states.

“The UN Charter makes no mention of peacekeeping,” Haley said. “No one thought of these kinds of missions when the Security Council first met. But when given an appropriate mandate, and when properly managed and equipped, no one doubts that these missions can play an essential role supporting peace and saving lives. That is why peacekeeping reform remains a top priority for the United States. ”

“When I arrived here, we laid out a few principles that continue to guide our approach. Peacekeeping missions need to support political solutions. They need host country cooperation. Mandates must be realistic and achievable. Missions need to have an exit strategy. And we need to be willing to change mandates when things aren’t working.

“The United States strongly believes that we need robust performance standards and data-driven analysis on the performance of peacekeepers.

“We need to develop a ‘culture of performance’ when it comes to the peacekeeping operations at the UN. The people the UN serves deserve to know that when blue helmets arrive, they are qualified, appropriately equipped, and ready to perform their duty.”

Haley also pushed for shared financial responsibility, instead of most of the burden for peacekeeping falling on the shoulders of the US.

“The United States has long been the largest financial contributor to UN peacekeeping by far,” she noted. “That will not change, but peacekeeping is a shared responsibility. With shared responsibility comes shared burdens and shared costs.”

“One country should not shoulder more than one quarter of the UN peacekeeping budget, and we look forward to a more equitable distribution of the budget among member states. Moving forward, the United States will not pay more than 25 percent of the peacekeeping budget. This is a cap required by US law.

“We pledge to work with Member States and the organization to ensure we make this adjustment in a fair and sensible manner that protects UN peacekeeping. All of us have a role to play, and all of us must step up.”