International Day of UN Peacekeepers: General Sarath Chand lauds Army

| Updated: May 30, 2017 01:27 IST

New Delhi [India], May 29 (ANI): On the occasion of International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers, Vice Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Sarath Chand remembered 168 soldiers on Monday who died in various corners of the world for the cause of peace. Speaking to ANI, Sarath Chand said, "India is contributing around 6,900 military personnel among 1, 15,000 peacekeepers in various missions. 168 Indian peacekeepers lost their lives since UN operations began. In 2016,117 peacekeepers from around the world lost their lives". The theme for the 2017 International Day of UN Peacekeepers is "Investing in Peace Around the World". As dated, a total of 3,576 peacekeepers have sacrificed their lives in the UN mission. 168 Indian Peacekeepers have sacrificed their lives while serving under the UN flag. Last year in 2016, 117 of 43 nation's peacekeepers laid their life for peace in peacekeeping mission which includes two from India. Two fallen peacekeepers from India received the Dag Hammarskjold medal- Rifleman Brijesh Thapa who served with the United National Organisation Stabilization mission in the Democratic republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) and Sepoy Ravi Kumar who was deployed with the united Nations interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) this year. A total of 13 peacekeepers have sacrificed their life in the year 2017. Currently, more than 96,000 uniformed personnel from the 124 troop and police-contributing countries serve under the blue flag, alongside more than 15,000 international and national civilian staff and nearly 1, 600 United Nation Volunteers. India is the largest cumulative troop contributor, having provided almost 2, 00,000 troops in nearly 50 of the 71 peacekeeping mission mandated over the past six decades, including 13 of the current 16 mission. So far, about 168 Indian troops have made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty under the UN flag. India currently deploys more than 7,600 military and police personnel to UN peace operations. As per Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS), matters of sexual exploitation and abuse are counted by reports received. A report of sexual exploitation and abuse may relate to one or more alleged perpetrators, and may involve one or more victims. When a report is received, a process of ensuring accountability starts. If a report received refers to alleged perpetrators of more than one category of personnel (for example, civilian and military), or personnel from more than one troop-contributing country, the report would be counted individually for each separate track of accountability: one for civilian personnel, and one for each troop-contributing country whose personnel may be involved. On December 11, 2002, the UN General assembly designated May 29 as the International Day of UN Peacekeepers. The day was first observed on May 29, 2003. Over time, peacekeeping has grown from simply monitoring ceasefires to protecting civilians, disarming ex-combatants, protecting human rights, promoting the rule of law, supporting free and fair elections, minimizing the risk of land-mines and so much more. (ANI)