Center for Strategic Decision Research

Paris '07 Workshop

How the United Nations Can Work with NATO, the EU and Other International Organizations

Hungarian Amb to UN Gabor Brodi

Ambassador Gábor Bródi
Ambassador of Hungary to the United Nations

Ambassador Gabor Brodi, Hungary's Permanent Representative to the UN , before the Dome of King Louis XIV's Hotel National des Invalides.

"A more structured relationship between the U.N. and regional organizations
would take advantage of their genuine complementarity,
based on their comparative advantage

In our increasingly interdependent global environment, regional issues can be tackled effectively only in a multilateral cooperative framework. This is because the relevance, competence, and capability of regional organizations such as the EU and NATO have increased significantly in the security sector, especially in the fields of human security, peacekeeping, civilian protection, and addressing the new security challenges. The EU and NATO are ready to take on new global missions and to build new capabilities accordingly.

          While the international community does recognize regional organizations' increasing responsibility and capability in meeting global challenges, adapting the multilateral framework for cooperation has been rather slow. Currently the U.N. provides a general framework for political dialogue and cooperation through high-level meetings between the United Nations (the General Assembly, the Security Council, and the Secretary General) and regional and other intergovernmental organizations. Six working groups have been established focusing on peacekeeping, civilian protection, respect for human rights in counterterrorism, dialogue among civilizations, disarmament, and implementation of the U.N. reforms for the U.N.-EU partnership. Secretary General Kofi Annan also involved regional and other intergovernmental organizations in the U.N. reform agenda, but their impact is still weak—strengthening the institutional aspects of the partnership is not yet an integral part of the ongoing reform process.

          However, dialogue with the Security Council on specific, related regional issues and new aspects of security and cooperation during thematic debates is now strengthening the partnership and contributing to defining and meeting new security challenges. The key area of cooperation is furthering development of organizational capacities in conflict prevention and resolution, peacekeeping, and peace building, both at the regional and sub-regional levels. Currently under discussion are:

                   • A 10-year capacity-building plan for the African Union

                   • Cooperation among NATO, the EU, and the African Union  

                   • The joint political and military experience gained by the EU and the U.N. in enabling the A.U. to participate in peacekeeping tasks in Darfur, Sudan (AMIS)

                   •  The implementation of the U.N. Security Council resolutions on the "heavy package" and hybrid force

Dialogue is also having not only an immediate, positive security impact but is providing solutions and a framework for long-term cooperation.


               A more structured relationship between the U.N. and regional organizations would take advantage of their genuine complementarity, based on their comparative advantages. Agreements with individual organizations would enable:

                   • The OSCE: Institution building in post-conflict situations and diplomatic management of "frozen conflicts"

                   • The EU: Tangible progress in crisis-management areas; handing over of responsibilities from the United Nations International Police Task Force to the EU Police Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina; rapid deployment at the request of the Security Council of the EU military operation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Artemis); EU assistance in the establishment of an Integrated Police Unit in Kinshasa; a joint U.N.-EU consultative mechanism at the working level to enhance mutual coordination and compatibility in the areas of planning, training, communication, and best practices; and, when battle groups are fully operational, enhancing the EU's capacity for crisis management operations requiring rapid military response, providing the possibility of deployment of new EU-led crisis-management operations in response to requests from the Security Council.


          In the future, joint disaster relief and disaster risk-reduction activities involving interested regional and sub-regional organizations could be held under the umbrella of high-level meetings under Chapter VIII of the U.N. Charter. The U.N. could also significantly improve the general framework for cooperation, but the evolution of the internal process of the individual organizations is setting the pace. Currently there are differing philosophies regarding the role of political and interest groups in decision-making.

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