The head of United Nations peacekeeping operations will visit India this week to acknowledge the contribution of Indian soldiers and civilian staff in various peacekeeping missions across the world and the sacrifices made by them.
Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Herve Ladsous arrived first in Nepal, which is the fifth largest contributor of uniformed personnel to the UN Peacekeeping. Mr. Ladsous is on five-day trip to the region and will travel to Bangladesh and India.
He will visit India, which is the second largest contributor of UN peacekeepers, on July 25 and is expected to meet top officials in the Defence Ministry, sources said.
“Mr. Ladsous is visiting all three countries to thank them for their contributions to UN Peacekeeping Missions around the world and the sacrifices made by their uniformed personnel and civilian staff,” Deputy Spokesman for Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Farhan Haq told reporters on Monday.
In all three countries, the Under-Secretary-General is expected to meet with senior government officials.
While in Kathmandu, he will brief the Institute of Foreign Affairs on Nepal-UN Peacekeeping cooperation and later address Army officials on UN Peacekeeping.
In Bangladesh, which is the largest contributor of Blue Helmets to UN Peacekeeping, Mr. Ladsous will speak at the Bangladesh Institute of Peace, Support Operations Training, an institute that trains peacekeepers, on the trends and challenges of UN Peacekeeping.
India has contributed more than 170,000 troops to 43 of the 68 UN peacekeeping missions since the inception of UN peacekeeping more than 60 years ago. In May, eight Indian soldiers, who lost their lives while serving in UN peacekeeping operations last year, were among the 106 military, police and civilian personnel to be awarded posthumously a prestigious UN medal this week for their courage and sacrifice in the line of duty.