India reassured international community of its continued support for United Nations (UN) mandated peacekeeping operations around the world and confirmed the pledge to provide troops at the Leaders' Summit on Peacekeeping in London on Thursday.
The Minister of State for Defence, Dr. Subhash Bhamre, represented the Narendra Modi government at the defence ministerial meeting. Dr. Bhamre spoke at the plenary sessions which were attended by representatives of more than 100 countries. Dr. Bhamre's stance echoes PM Modi's pledge in his speech at last year's Leaders' Summit on Peacekeeping in New York.
India has been supporting peacekeeping operation for the past seven decades and its response has been, "consistent and substantive."
"More than 230,000 Indian troops have participated in 50 of the 71 UN peacekeeping operations mandated by the UN Security Council so far," the minister said, PTI reported.
The minister also explained that India not only contributes troops to the peacekeeping operations, but also trains and helps other countries in capacity building. This year, India trained 114 peacekeepers from 35 countries. African countries and female peacekeepers were treated to special courses, Dr. Bhamre added.
India also highlighted the challenges faced by UN peacekeeping nations with some armed groups and non-state actors playing "spoilers" to peace efforts.
Stressing that peacekeeping operations were major facet of UN missions and no longer just "benign and humanitarian tasks," Dr. Bhamre warned about challenges from armed groups and non-state actors try to disrupt peace efforts.
He called up members to work in harmony with the host governments. He also suggested bringing qualitative improvements in the performance of UN contingents, staff and mission leadership.
Dr. Bhamre reverberated PM Modi's speech where he stressed on the need to involve Troop Contributing Nations in mandate formulation, representation in key leadership positions in mission areas along with the key requirement for more Security Council representation.
The London meet was a follow-up to the Leaders' Summit on Peacekeeping in New York. The next year's meet will be held in Canada.