United Nations, April 21 (IANS) India has lamented the lack of political will to fund peacebuilding efforts even as there is recognition that such programmes are urgently required to prevent conflicts within nations that spiral out with international impact.
"There is little political commitment for commensurate action and substantive support to peacebuilding efforts," Tanmaya Lal, India's Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, said on Thursday.
"The funding available for such efforts remains marginal, severely limiting the ability of the Peace Building Commission."
Speaking at the annual General Assembly debate on the Peace Building Commission and its funding, Lal said that although investments in peacebuilding would go a long way in preventing conflicts, "there is no agreement on increasing the funding for the Peace Building Commission to even a one per cent level of that for peacekeeping operations annually."
Currently the annual peacekeeping budget is $7.87 billion.
"The ministerial level pledging conference in September last year could only elicit half of the $300 million goal, which was projected as the minimum amount needed to sustain operations for three years," he said.
India has voluntarily contributed $5 million to the Peacebuilding Fund since it started in 2006, and of that $1 million was given last year.
The nature of conflicts have changed and more of them now are between groups within nations, Lal said.
However, they also draw in non state actors including international terror networks, he said.
"In an interdependent world, conflicts in any part of the world have much wider implications through such terror networks or large movements of refugees," he added.
"We, therefore, have a collective interest in building and sustaining peace."
In this context, he said: "There is a clear recognition of the importance of a comprehensive sustainable development, inclusive economic growth and political processes in preventing conflict as well as undertaking effective peacebuilding efforts."
(Arul Louis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)