UN peacekeeping forces face greater threats from complex conflicts – Jammu Kashmir Latest News | tourism
United Nations, Nov 21: The more than 87,000 UN peacekeeping operations staff are now facing greater threats as conflicts have become more complex and driven by an increasing number of factors, ranging from ethnic tensions to the effects of organized crime to illegal Exploitation of rich resources and terrorism, said the UN peace chief on Friday.
Jean-Pierre Lacroix said in an interview with The Associated Press that, even compared to two or three years ago, “most of our peacekeeping missions are in a deteriorated political and security environment”.
In addition and “just as important” is that the conflicts are “multi-layered” and very often local and national, but also regional and global. As an example, he referred to the impoverished Sahel region in Africa, which is experiencing increasing terrorist activity.
What is causing this change in the way UN peacekeepers work is a number of factors that begin with increasing political divisions among the UN’s 193 member states, he said.
The causes of conflict are increasing, Lacroix said, and there are also so-called “conflict improvers”, including digital technologies, the effects of fake news and misinformation on conflict, and “armed groups using increasingly sophisticated means to undermine our actions.”
The United Nations currently has 12 widely dispersed peacekeeping missions – six in Africa, four in the Middle East, one in Europe and one in Asia – with more than 66,000 military personnel from 121 countries, as well as over 7,000 international police officers and 14,000 civilians.
Lacroix said that in countries where they monitor ceasefires like Cyprus and southern Lebanon, peacekeeping forces continue to make “a big difference” in preventing conflict and “they also make a big difference in protecting civilians, despite us that would have “been able to do more”.
But the Secretary-General for Peace Operations said the drivers of the conflict “have a massive impact on the conflicts in which we are involved”.
“They pose a growing threat to the countries where our missions are deployed and, frankly, to the region in which we operate,” he said.
“As a multilateral system, are we adequately equipped to face these threats?” Asked Lacroix rhetorically. “I’m not sure. I think more should probably be done in these areas.”
He cited an upcoming UN peacekeeping ministerial meeting on December 7-8 in Seoul, South Korea, as an important opportunity to improve the performance and effectiveness of peacekeeping forces and “the effectiveness of our instruments,” and to mobilize international support for these efforts.
Lacroix said “a significant number” of ministers and high-level officials from all UN member states are expected in Seoul, stressing that high-level participation is “vital” as an expression of support for UN peacekeeping as one A separate UN budget will be funded of $ 6.38 billion for the year ending June 30, 2022, as well as voluntary contributions.
He said the peacekeeping division had distributed a list to UN member states of what they need to improve the protection of peacekeeping forces from ambushes, improvised explosive devices and attacks, and to protect their camps.
The list also includes improved medical support and equipment to make peacekeeping forces more nimble, mobile and reactive, especially more helicopters, he said.
Lacroix said there were two other very important areas: improving the missions’ ability to gather and process information to better mitigate rather than respond to threats, and increasing the number of women on peacekeeping missions “because we are with.” Security know that more “women in peacekeeping means more effective peacekeeping”.
He said it is “extremely important” that governments support the “ministry’s strategy for the digital transformation of peacekeeping because we firmly believe that making the best use of these new technologies can fundamentally transform peacekeeping.” .
To achieve this, the UN must improve what he called “the digital skills of peacekeepers and our peacekeepers”, which means more training.
If the peacekeeping division and peacekeepers make better use of digital technology, the men and women in the field can be better protected, Lacroix said.
“We are likely to be better able to communicate and counteract misinformation,” and the United Nations can better collect and process information “to enable effective action,” he said.
Lacroix said, however, that if peacekeeping is to be successful – “that is, creating the conditions in which peace missions can depart”, it is “vital” that governments support political efforts to achieve that goal.
He said it must also be recognized that more and more peacekeeping operations are part of broader efforts and partnerships that can build or contribute to various capacities, including security, to deliver humanitarian assistance in places like Congo, South Sudan or Mali.
“We have to make sure we are playing a role in which you can make the best possible difference and other partners have to take the same approach and we have to complement each other,” said Lacroix. (AGENCIES)