ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations Maleeha Lodhi said that Islamabad has “enhanced the participation of women in UN peacekeeping operations”.
While speaking at the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations, Lodhi said that “Pakistan is proud to have achieved the goal of deployment of 15 per cent female staff officers in its missions”.
Moreover, according to a statement issued by Foreign Office, “Lodhi was referring to the fact that in less than 18 months, Pakistan has gone from zero participation of female military staff officers in peacekeeping operations to the UN prescribed benchmark of 15 per cent.”
Lodhi further said, “Pakistan was deploying an engagement team consisting of women in the Democratic Republic of Congo in May 2019.”
Ambassador Lodhi said that “as a leading troop contributor as well as a host state, Pakistan would continue to support efforts to strengthen peacekeeping”.
It was further reported that the Pakistani envoy also referred to “United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) and said that Pakistan had always supported the mission in the implementation of its mandate”.
“UNMOGIP has an important role to play in the maintenance of peace and security in a volatile neighbourhood and called for its strengthening and expansion to make it more effective,” Lodhi said.
She further stressed that “the safety and security of peacekeepers remained urgent as threats faced by them have increased due to complex and evolving conflicts”.
“Peacekeeping is already a cost-effective undertaking which draws strength from the collective political will of the international community,” she maintained.
“Achieving more with less is not sustainable”. “It is time we start enabling our peacekeepers to live up to the ideals that we claim to be committed to”, Lodhi added.
She further stated that there is a need to preserve the fundamentals of peacekeeping and that “the legitimacy and credibility enjoyed by UN peacekeeping operations were based on the commitment to uphold these principles”.