Rwanda: We Are Proud to Work With You in Peacekeeping, U.S. to Rwanda

Rwanda has been commended to be among the world's largest and capable peacekeepers ahead of the UN Peacekeeping meeting slated for December 2021.

This was said during a two-day preparatory meeting co-hosted by Rwanda and USA which wrapped up on July 22nd.

"Rwanda is among world's largest and most capable peacekeeping troop and police contributors, deploying in five UN Missions. The US State Department is proud to support through GPOI," reads a tweet from the US State Department's office of political military affairs.

GPOI is the Global Peacekeeping Operations Initiative, a US programme that supports peacekeeping missions through enhancing their capacities.

They listed Rwanda's peacekeeping interventions including seven infantry battalions, six formed police units, one Level 2 hospital and one helicopter unit.

In his remarks, Peter Vrooman, US Ambassador in Rwanda, said that Rwanda undertakes peacekeeping as a constitutional and moral obligation.

"The international community failed Rwanda in its greatest time of need, and all of us could have done more, but Rwanda has turned our collective failure into its moral imperative to act on behalf of collective security."

Addressing the meeting virtually, Maj. Gen Albert Murasira, Minister of Defence said "Rwanda remains committed to capacity building through training, joint exercises and sharing lessons learnt in the framework of Light Coordination Mechanism."

More than 45,000 personnel have been deployed, US trained, in support of UN missions since its first deployment as a troop-contributing country in 2004, according to available information.

Today, more than 5,000 Rwandan troops, police, experts, and advisors provide critical support to peacekeeping missions including; MINUSCA (Central African Republic), UNMISS (South Sudan), and UNISFA (Abei Region).

Rwanda was also part of UNAMID in Sudan's Darfur region until it completed its drawdown in June this year.

Since 2014, the International Police Peacekeeping Operations Support Programme has trained more than 2,000 Rwandan police officers before deploying to peacekeeping missions.

Among others, a priority project to enhance the recognition of outstanding performers was discussed.

"Dedicated troops and police will receive the broader recognition they deserve when they go above and beyond the core of duty," Said Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations, UN.

Rwanda is also credited for its commitment to implementing the Women, Peace, and Security agenda.

Vrooman also credited Rwanda for its commitment to implementing the Women, Peace, and Security agenda while referring to the gender parity in the engagement platoon.

"Rwandan women deployed with this training as peacekeepers will provide a holistic view to the challenges facing local populations, including gender-based violence," he said.

The UN Peacekeeping meeting will be hosted in Seoul, South Korea.

It is expected to provide a unique opportunity for member states to come together and concretely express their support for strengthening UN peacekeeping, import by pledging support for critical peace keeping requirements.

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