The United Nations Secretary General António Guterres has stressed that addressing the links between fragility and conflict is an essential component of international peace and security. He was speaking during a high-level virtual debate of the Council to examine the challenges of maintaining peace and security in fragile or conflict-affected countries.
“ Fragility and conflict are among the greatest obstacles to implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the conflict landscape was deteriorating.Conflicts have become more complex, fueled by greater regionalization, the proliferation of non-State armed groups, and their linkages with criminal and even terrorist interests. They last longer and become more difficult to resolve. According to the World Bank Fragility and Conflict Report, one of every five people in the Middle East and North Africa lives in close proximity to a major conflict. As a consequence, humanitarian needs have multiplied, reaching the highest levels since the Second World War.
The number of people at risk of starvation has doubled.
International conflict management mechanisms have been stretched to the breaking point.
These trends have placed a number of countries in a vicious cycle. Conflict continues to breed poverty and foster institutional fragility, which in turn decreases the resilience of these societies and the prospects for peace. By 2030, the World Bank estimates that two thirds of the world’s extreme poor will live in fragile or conflict-affected countries.
The COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated these trends”, he said.