UN – Visit to New York by the minister in connection with the French Security Council presidency (30-31 October 2017)


Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian will be in New York on October 30 and 31 in connection with the French Security Council Presidency.

He will preside over the following events:

  • Sahel. On October 30, the minister for Europe and foreign affairs will chair a ministerial meeting attended by representatives of G5 Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad). Participants will examine the increased capabilities of the joint force, following the Security Council visit to the Sahel (Oct. 19-23) and the UN secretary-general’s report of October 16. This meeting will reaffirm the Security Council’s support for the joint force and will deal with the international community’s means of supporting the G5 Sahel initiative.
  • The protection of children in armed conflicts. Mr. Le Drian will chair an open debate at the Security Council on October 31 with Virginia Gamba, the special representative of the UN secretary-general for children and armed conflict. While progress made since the adoption of the Paris commitments in 2007 has been encouraging, Mr. Le Drian will call on the international community to make this issue a priority, particularly in line with the Protecting Children from War conference held in Paris this past February. France will specifically highlight the threats that terrorist groups represent to children.

Also on October 31, the minister will host a meeting on the protection of humanitarian and medical personnel in conflicts. As they continue to be the target of attacks and acts of violence, the participants will study ways to improve the implementation of existing mechanisms, particularly those set forth in resolution 2286 on the protection of medical personnel, which France supported. On this occasion, Mr. Le Drian will reaffirm our commitment to promote respect for international humanitarian law on the ground and the implementation of concrete solutions to protect civilians.

In preparation for these two events, on October 23 Jean-Yves Le Drian received representatives from several NGOs working on human rights and the protection of civilians in conflict zones. In this regard, Mr. Le Drian announced a funding increase for humanitarian action in 2018.

During the French presidency (October 2017), the Security Council monitored the main international crises and highlighted women’s contributions to conflict resolution and ending crises in an enduring manner. I refer you to today’s statement on this subject by the minister.

During his stay, Mr. Le Drian will present French foreign policy guidelines and priorities to the American press and foreign trade advisors at the Council on Foreign Relations.