The Philippine National Police once again sends personnel as peacekeeping contingents of the country to the United Nations Mission after the few years halt due to the outbreak of the CoVID-19 pandemic.
Coinciding with the traditional Monday Flag Raising Ceremony, on the morning of November 7, 2022, Police General Rodolfo S. Azurin, Jr., led in the send-off ceremony of the 20 PNP members who will join other peacekeepers from all over the world to be deployed in South Sudan for the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission.
Founded on July 8, 2011, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) came to existence with thousands of international peacekeepers deployed there for the purpose of protecting civilians, monitoring and investigating human rights violations, giving humanitarian assistance, and promoting the implementation of the peace agreement of the newly created state to its bordering neighbors.
The Philippines has long been a regular police-contributing country to the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations. This started in 1962 when the country joined other member-states in supporting the UN Operations in Congo (ONUC). From then on, the Filipino peacekeepers continued to show their resiliency and commitment in maintaining peace and order as they served alongside their counterparts from other troops- and-police-contributing countries in the UN peacekeeping missions, such as in Cambodia, Timor-Leste, Syria, Golan Heights, Sudan, Burundi, South Sudan, Abyei, Darfur, Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Kosovo, Georgia, Haiti and Kashmir. The country also sent troops for other UN-authorized missions to aid in fighting aggression by one state against another, like in Korea during the Korean War; in Iraq, Nepal, Lebanon and Afghanistan.
Through the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly, the UN Peacekeeping Forces are mandated to help countries in addressing conflict and be able to achieve national stability and insurgence-free communities.
From a pool of 107 PNP officers on standby for United Nations peacekeeping deployment, 20 personnel were chosen and are initially deployed as Individual Police Officers (IPOs) this year, of whom, 13 are females and seven are males. The planned schedule of their departure was on November 15, 2022.
Senator Imee R. Marcos, Chairperson of Foreign Relations, and Ms. Nome T. Diaz, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Department of Foreign Affairs Office for United Nations and International Organization (UNIO, DFA) graced the said send-off ceremony in Camp BGen Rafael T. Crame, Quezon City.
“This PNP deployment is testament to the Philippines’ effort to revitalize participation in UN peacekeeping operations, as affirmed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr in his message on September 20, 2022 before the 77th Session of the UN General Assembly,” General Azurin said.