The Commonwealth’s Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma, has placed his organisation behind UN Security Council Resolution 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security, adopted earlier this week in New York. “I congratulate the Security Council for unanimously passing this important resolution,” stated the Secretary-General. “It paves the way for young people to have a greater voice in decision-making at all levels and is an essential step in halting the violent extremism that has devastated many parts of the world. I also commend the partners and agencies that have worked diligently in support of the resolution, including the UN Youth Envoy, the UN Development Programme and the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs.”
The UN resolution states that youth-led organizations are important partners in global efforts to prevent radicalization and counter violent extremism. It also supports the youth-led peace-building and conflict-prevention programmes that are essential to good governance and the rule of law.
The Security Council’s resolution is aligned with the final Communiqué of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting that took place last month in Malta. The Communiqué states that “young people, who comprise sixty per-cent of the Commonwealth’s population, have an important role in building stable, secure and prosperous societies, and that Commonwealth programmes can help raise awareness of the risk of radicalisation and prevent young people from embracing violent extremism, radicalisation and terrorism in all its forms and ramifications.”
The Commonwealth’s Communiqué goes on to support youth participation in national development and peace building, and to encourage partnership activity with Commonwealth youth networks to help counter the appeal of violent extremism.