Among the 12 commitments from the Declaration on the Commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, is the UN Secretary General’s call for a “New Agenda for Peace” (New Agenda). Billed as an opportunity to revisit the United Nations Charter’s founding pledge to prevent the scourge of war, the New Agenda could be an opportunity to recalibrate multilateral approaches to conflict prevention and resolution, as well as to promote human rights and gender equality. Given the “systemic failures” and “structural shortcomings” in the UN’s handling of the situation in Myanmar (see 2019 Rosenthal inquiry), it is apt to consider what lessons Myanmar could hold for this New Agenda. In addition to shedding light on the UN’s conflict prevention shortcomings, a contextual look at the crisis - and opportunities - in Myanmar can be instructive on other pertinent peacebuilding dynamics. From the need to address gender in conflict to the limits of regional prevention mechanisms, the complexities of the situation in Myanmar challenge advocates, policymakers, and States to consider inclusive and reflexive paths to peace
This event asks: if Myanmar is centered as a case study for this new vision, what priorities emerge for UN peacebuilding?