Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has underlined Pakistan’s longstanding commitment to the United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions as a major troop and police contributing country for over the last six decades.
Qureshi addressed the UN Peacekeeping Preparatory Conference (PrepCon) on ‘Safety and Security and Protection’ via a video link. The meeting was hosted by Pakistan and the Netherlands on October 25-26, the Foreign Office said in a statement on Tuesday.
Pakistani peacekeepers have served in 46 peacekeeping missions in almost all the continents. The foreign minister paid tribute to all the peacekeepers, who had laid down their lives, while serving under UN flag, including the 161 gallant Pakistanis who had made the ultimate sacrifice.
“Peacekeeping is the most effective when it is part of a ‘political strategy’ to settle disputes,” Qureshi emphasised.
Also read: Pakistan’s long journey in keeping peace
Highlighting the evolving nature of conflicts, he stressed that adequate resources must be provided for enhancing the performance and ensuring the safety and security of peacekeepers.
The foreign minister also called for helping the missions in implementing their mandates on the protection of civilians. He recalled that through the Centre for International Peace and Security (CIPS) in Islamabad, Pakistan was imparting pre-deployment training to Pakistani and international peacekeepers.
The Conference also featured video messages of the defence minister of Pakistan and the foreign minister of the Netherlands. The PrepCon was held in the run-up to a UN Peacekeeping ministerial meeting to be held in Seoul on December 7-8, 2021.
Senior civilian and military experts from member states and the UN Secretariat participated in the two-day PrepCon. The discussions focussed on the importance of training and capacity building, health and medical support, mission integration, technology, and community engagement.
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