Asserting that Bangladesh’s commitment to UN peacekeeping is strong and steadfast and it stands ready to go further, prime minister Sheikh Hasina has urged all members of the peacekeeping community to work together to ensure peace and security around the world. ‘I call upon all members of the peacekeeping community to work together to ensure peace and security around the world,’ she said. The prime minister said this at a Summit on Peacekeeping Operation at the UN Headquarters in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly on Monday. Sheikh Hasina co-chaired the Summit with US president Barack Obama. She said Bangladesh is adopting a national peacekeeping strategy to better respond to the evolving needs of the UN peacekeeping missions on the ground and at policy level, United News of Bangladesh reports. ‘The national peacekeeping strategy paper is now at the final stage. As the leading troops and police contributor, Bangladesh stands ready to go further,’ the prime minister told her audience. She said Bangladesh’s commitment to UN peacekeeping is strong and steadfast. ‘In Mali, DR Congo and Central African Republic, Bangladesh was the quickest to deploy troops under blue helmet.’ Recalling Bangladesh’s some commitments in last year’s Summit, Hasina said Bangladesh is committed to providing infantry battalions, formed police units, utility helicopters, engineering and maritime units, and other enabling assets to address the existing and projected gaps in peacekeeping missions. She said Bangladesh recognises the need for the modernisation of peacekeeping operations with new technologies. ‘Their use should follow the principles of UN peacekeeping,’ she said. Hasina said Bangladesh has established Institute for Peace Support Operations and Training. The institute is being developed as a centre of excellence for training peacekeepers, especially the women ones, she said. The prime minister said Bangladesh is also pledge-bound to provide customised training and technical support to other troops and police contributing countries. ‘Bangladesh is also committed to protecting civilians and promoting gender and human rights issues,’ she said. She called for ‘zero tolerance’ to sexual misconduct by peacekeepers saying highest priority should be given to the safety and security of peacekeepers. Expressing her full support to the Secretary General’s recommendations, the prime minister urged all members of the peacekeeping community to work together to ensure peace and security around the world. The Summit was jointly hosted by Bangladesh, the USA, Japan, Pakistan Rwanda, Indonesia, the Netherlands, Ethiopia and the UN. Leaders of over 50 countries from around the world attended the Summit in which they again committed to mobilising a strong and modern UN peacekeeping force with 1.20 lakh troops. Apart from Bangladesh prime minister, US president Barak Obama and Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe along with leaders of six more countries and the UNSG co-chaired the Summit.
Source: New Age