|Deputy Minister of Public Security Luong Tam Quang (second from right) and UN Police Advisor and Director of Police Division Faisal Shahkar (second from left) hand over the decision to establish Vietnam Peacekeeping Police Unit No. 1__Photo: VNA
The Ministry of Public Security (MPS) Office for UN Peacekeeping Operations held an inauguration ceremony for the Vietnam Police Peacekeeping Unit No.1 in Hanoi on January 11.
The unit is tasked with ensuring safety and security for UN personnel and assets, joining efforts in civilian protection, and supporting other police services when required at UN peacekeeping missions.
In his remarks, Deputy Minister of Public Security Luong Tam Quang stressed that the decision to establish the unit demonstrates the commitment of the Party, the State and the ministry to actively and responsibly joining efforts in maintaining peace, stability and development in the region and the world.
This is a new step forward after the initial success in sending working groups to UN peacekeeping missions, he said, noting that the establishment of the first police peacekeeping unit aims to contribute more to protecting international and regional peace and security, as well as the basic principles of the UN Charter.
Addressing the event, Commissioner Faisal Shahkar, UN Police Advisor and Director of Police Division, hailed the Vietnamese Government and the MPS for their commitment to UN peacekeeping.
"The establishment of this unit is a historic milestone and a testament to Vietnam's growing role and contribution to regional and global peace and security. It demonstrates the professionalism and dedication of Vietnam's police force as well as the country's willingness to share its expertise and experience with countries in need," he said.
He expressed his confidence that once deployed, the unit will uphold the highest standards of conduct and performance, and will make a positive difference in the lives of the people it serves.
"The United Nations is grateful for your partnership and support, and we look forward to working with you in the future," he said.
According to Shahkar, formed police units (FPUs) now represent around 75% of the UN police personnel deployed in peacekeeping operations. Today, close to 8,000 UN police officers are authorized to serve in UN peace operations. Among those, there are 34 FPUs approved for deployment, comprising the total strength of almost 6,000 police officers.
"FPUs contribute to the implementation of essential mandated tasks, namely the safety and security of UN personnel and assets, the protection of civilians and support for state police operations requiring a specialized or formed response," he said.
"Performing these tasks effectively demands the right balance of guidance, training, compliance and oversight," the Commissioner said, affirming support for contributing countries, including Vietnam, by facilitating and promoting good practices and coordinating efforts from multiple actors.
In an interview granted to the press, Shahkar said Vietnam’s police have recently joined UN peacekeeping operations and they are “performing very well”, expressing his hope that they will make more contributions in the near future.
Pointing to increasing challenges in the field, which require all peacekeepers to be properly trained, he stressed that the Vietnamese government and the MPS are “taking steps in the right direction.”
Senior Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Van Nam, Commander of the Vietnam Police Peacekeeping Unit No.1, told the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) that following the establishment, the unit will undergo training that follow UN standards and will be assessed by UN experts.
Regarding personnel selection, he said the unit members must be the most outstanding officers who have good professional and foreign language skills, and knowledge about international law.
So far, Vietnam has deployed seven police officers to UN peacekeeping operations, including six to the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and one to the UN headquarters.
The year 2023 continued to witness Vietnam’s practical and effective contributions to UN peacekeeping operations, helping to affirm the country’s image as a dynamic, active and responsible member of the international community.
Following the Party and State’s orientations, Vietnam has sent personnel to UN peacekeeping missions, realizing the country’s foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, peace, cooperation and development.
Vietnam has so far sent nearly 800 military and public security officers to the UNMISS, the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), and the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) as well as the UN headquarters in the forms of individuals and units.
Currently, Vietnam ranks 45th out of 120 countries sending military and police officers to the missions with the number of personnel regularly deployed to field missions reaching 274, including 36 women officers.- (VNA/VLLF)