On Tuesday (17 November, 2015) under the presidency of The United Kingdom Secretary of State for International Development, Justine Greening, the Security Council held a ministerial level open debate on the maintenance of international peace and security with a focus on the root causes of conflict. The initial title of the debate was “peaceful societies and conflict prevention”, directly referring to goal 16 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, but the title was successively changed to “root causes of conflict” possibly to address the concerns of the Russian Federation about discussing the 2030 Agenda outside the General Assembly. The ministerial debate was opened by Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s remarks, during which he expressed his deepest condolences to the Governments and people of France, Iraq, Lebanon and Russia for the loss of lives in the most recent terrorist attacks. Briefings by the Permanent Representative of Sweden, Olof Skoog, in his capacity of Chair of the Peace Buiding Committee (PBC) and by the President of the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts, Ouided Bouchamaoui, also a member of the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet winner of the 2015 Nobel Peace, followed.
On 05 November, the president circulated a concept note (S/2015/845), inviting the participant of the debate to consider the undeniable connections between peace, security and development when exploring the root causes of conflicts. She stressed the linkage during the debate as well, comparing development without stability and peace to a house built on the sand.
Out of nearly 77 statements delivered, only 17 speakers used specific gendered language, referring to the necessity of including girls and women in all peace processes and of protecting their rights as a fundamental aspect of peace building. Countries mainly focused their statements on the need of preventing conflicts, calling for sustainable social, economic and political reforms and mentioning the Role of Law and Justice. Security and Development were often referred as “two sides of the same coin” and several Member States called for the implementation of stability and security measures as the only ways to keep peace durable.