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For international peace and security

Feb 04,2014 - Last updated at Feb 04,2014

Australia’s longstanding friendship with Jordan is based, in part, on our shared interests in an effective United Nations system that addresses some of the most significant challenges to international peace and security; challenges that no one country can address individually.

Australia is pleased to be serving with Jordan on the United Nations Security Council for its term 2014-15. Australia also congratulates Jordan on its successful presidency of the council for the month of January.

We recognise Jordan’s leadership in managing a busy and productive agenda for the council, including chairing 24 meetings, negotiations on overseeing the renewal of three mandates, the adoption of a new resolution, and negotiation of nine council press statements and presidential statements on Mali and Iraq.

The Security Council’s mandate — to maintain international peace and security — is a daunting one. Every day, council members are working to end conflicts, both within countries and between them, and to build peace after conflict.

The council manages peacekeeping and peace building missions in over 30 countries. It works to ensure the protection of civilians in armed conflict, and the prevention of sexual violence in conflict.

The council is working to combat terrorist and proliferation threats, including the illicit trade of weapons, and overseeing the implementation of its sanctions regimes.

Australia looks forward to working with Jordan and our fellow council members to tackle these threats to international peace and security.

Stability in the Middle East, including Syria, will remain a central focus of the council efforts in the coming months.

Regional instability has a particularly acute impact on Jordan. Australia recognises Jordan’s significant contribution to hosting nearly 600,000 Syrian refugees, in addition to Iraqi and Palestinian refugees.

Since 2011, Australia has provided over $13.4 million in aid to support Jordan’s ongoing humanitarian response to the influx of Syrian refugees.

Australia has also driven council action to address the dire humanitarian situation in Syria, and is co-chairing, with Luxembourg, the High-Level Humanitarian Contact Group on Syria.

Australia further commends the critical role that Jordan has played in advancing final status negotiations in the Middle East peace process, including its efforts as a member of the League of Arab States.

Council members will be focused on ensuring UN peacekeeping and political mandates are effective and realistic, including new and ongoing African missions.

Jordan already has an impressive record as a significant peacekeeping contributor, with more than 3,200 personnel serving across eight UN missions. Australia and Jordan are serving together in UN Security Council-mandated missions in Afghanistan and South Sudan.

Australia will be working with Jordan and our counterparts to take concrete steps towards non-proliferation and disarmament. We are particularly focused on building on the Security Council’s first ever resolution on small arms and light weapons under Australia’s presidency in September 2013.

Importantly, our cooperation in the Security Council builds on an already strong partnership between Australia and Jordan.

Our likeminded approach on defence and security matters will be bolstered by the establishment of a defence attaché position at the Australian embassy in Amman.

And our ties continue to be strengthened through trade, which was valued at over $190 million in 2012, and which offers good prospects for growth.

It is in both Jordan and Australia’s interests to ensure the Security Council fulfils its responsibility for international peace and security.

We look forward to working in cooperation with Jordan over the coming months and years to this end.

The writer is the Australian ambassador to Jordan. She contributed this article to The Jordan Times. 

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