As delivered by Phillip Taula, Deputy Permanent Representative of New Zealand to the United Nations, 16 December 2016.

New Zealand strongly supports the work of UNMISS and we are pleased that the Council was able to reach consensus on the new mandate for UNMISS. That said, we would have preferred to have had a fuller discussion in order to work through the contentious issues.  We hope that sufficient time will be provided for discussion at the next renewal.

The Council should continue to closely monitor the suitability of UNMISS’s mandate in light of developing circumstances on the ground.

It will be important for the incoming Special Representative of the Secretary-General to make his own assessment of the needs of the Mission with fresh eyes, and to bring this assessment to the Council early next year.

It will also be important for the work of the Task Force headed by Assistant Secretary-General Wane, on the Independent Special Investigation, to be mainstreamed into the future mandate. 

In the meantime, we support the Secretary-General’s message from his strategic assessment of UNMISS that the mission needs to focus on its most pressing tasks – particularly protection of civilians, and support to the political process. 

As a final point, and as this may be our last public statement on a peacekeeping mission before our term ends, I do wish to briefly note New Zealand’s efforts to provide new, more meaningful Security Council engagement with Troop Contributing Countries and other key stakeholders through informal triangular consultations.

We encourage Council members to continue these efforts to engage troop contributing countries more productively. We also owe it to our peacekeepers and the people they are mandated to protect, to ensure that they are more consistently provided with clear and realistic mandates as well as the resources, equipment and support to carry them out.

Thank you Mr President.