Margot Wallström har entledigats, utrikesminister


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Anförande vid FN:s Peacebuilding Commission-möte om ebola

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New York 26 januari 2015
Det talade ordet gäller

Let me first express my deepest condolences to the families of all those who have perished in the Ebola epidemic. I commend Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea for their determination in facing this formidable challenge. And I pay tribute to the many brave healthcare workers engaged in the medical response and acknowledge the support provided by the UN and other international partners. Continued attention and support to fight Ebola is still needed.

Sweden has made significant contributions to the response to Ebola. We have provided about USD 73 million, as well as healthcare workers and other experts – mainly in Liberia, but also in Sierra Leone.

As Chair of the Peacebuilding Commission’s Liberia configuration, we have actively advocated that commitments and pledges made to the global Ebola response must be translated into action on the ground.

We have also stressed the importance of addressing immediate peacebuilding needs and meeting the broader security, developmental and governance challenges along with the medical public health response.

And we have pointed to the need to prepare for the medium term by planning for enhanced and accelerated peacebuilding support in the aftermath of the immediate crisis.

Alongside emergency support, beginning to prepare for the post-Ebola recovery phase will be critical. Not least considering the severe impact the epidemic has had on the economy.

However, the current outbreak also once again demonstrates how urgent it is that all countries have strong, resilient and integrated health systems, capable of fully implementing the International Health Regulations and having the capacity for health-related emergency preparedness. They must also make progress towards achieving universal health coverage that promotes universal, equitable access to health services and ensures affordable, quality service delivery.

The post-Ebola recovery in Liberia will take place as the UN peacekeeping mission (UNMIL) begins to transition out, and as preparations commence for the important presidential elections in 2017. Although the epidemic has affected men and women to the same degree when it comes to the total number of infected individuals, in some respects women have been particularly hard hit. A recent World Bank survey from Liberia shows that in the last three months, 60 per cent of the women were unemployed, as compared with 40 per cent for the male population. Women have also been severely hit by the non-existent or limited access to healthcare in connection with antenatal care, births and the health of newborns.

We therefore look forward to the Ebola Recovery Assessment led by UNDP. We welcome the inclusive process, with special emphasis on the affected countries in which the assessment will be conducted. We note that the review will cover four areas of priority: peacebuilding, social services, economic recovery and infrastructure.

Let me stress that peacebuilding is not only about governance and the rule of law. It must be an integrated part of all four of these pillars. Capacity building and the strengthening of national institutions must be at the centre of these efforts. We hope that the findings of this assessment will include recommendations on the way forward and provide input for a renewed and focused commitment to peacebuilding in all the affected countries.

The PBC will continue to play an important role in providing a platform for coordination and mutual commitment, and in linking the relevant developmental, political and security aspects. We look forward to continuing to support this process, not least in the role of Chair of the PBC Organisational Committee for 2015, for which we have been nominated by the Western European and Others Group and hope to be appointed shortly.

Thank you.