63 rd session of the UN General Assembly (New York, September 23-26, 2008)
French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the minister of Foreign and European affairs, Bernard Kouchner, the three secretaries of State, Mr Jean-Pierre Jouyet, Mr Alain Joyandet and Ms Rama Yade, are in New York on the occasion of the UN General Assembly.
President Sarkozy is taking part in this General Assembly at which some 40 heads of state and government will be present. There is real mobilization by the highest authorities and UN members for this General Assembly.
President Sarkozy, Mr Kouchner and the State secretaries will be attending by virtue of France’s capacity as president of the EU. This confers a responsibility on us, a special role for the entire general assembly.
As president of the EU, France wants there to be time for exchanging ideas about the partnership between the EU and the UN on everything having to do with crisis management and peacekeeping operations, of which the EUFOR/Chad/CAR operation is an example.
From our point of view, the UN must continue to play a central role in the management of international crises. The European Union must be able to make a more substantial contribution to conflict resolution, especially through the European security and defense policy.
At France’s initiative the biggest European military operation ever deployed outside, the EUFOR-Chad-CAR mission, which has become a European operation under the ESDP.
There’s also Georgia, with the deployment of an independent ESDP mission-civilian this time, set up in a very short space of time. The formal decision was taken barely a week ago, and we will be able to deploy it on schedule, that is extremely quickly.
There’s a European strategy to address maritime piracy with the establishment of headquarters for coordination, at the initiative of France and Spain.
And there there’s a deployment-complex but under way-of the biggest EULEX civilian mission in Kosovo.
The value of the ESDP is that it provides a raft of tools which range from specific civilian missions, including monitoring, as in Georgia, to police missions, for example in the Balkans and Afghanistan, and military missions as for example in eastern Chad and the northeast of the Central African Republic.
There is no doubt at all that there is-and specifically at France’s initiative but not just France-a dynamic for implementing the ESDP through concrete actions.
All these European initiatives are closely coordinated with the UN.
President Sarkozy speech (in French)
More information on the 63 rd session of the UN General Assembly on the UN website