On the occasion of International Day of UN Peacekeepers, on May 29th, US Secretary of State Mr Anthony J Blinken made an address to the press. He said that the United States reaffirms its unwavering commitment to UN peacekeeping. The US joins the international community in honoring those who have served in UN peacekeeping operations since 1948, the more than 4,000 peacekeepers who have died in the line of duty, those who have been injured, and those who continue to risk their lives every day upholding peace. Mr Blinken said that he is heartened to see an increase of women peacekeepers every year; they inspire and support women and girls to be leaders in their communities and agents of change.
At its core, peacekeeping is about helping people whose lives have been ravaged by conflict and creating space for durable peace to take root. The country is focused on promoting the protection of civilians, sustainable political solutions, human rights, and gender equality as priority aspects of peacekeeping missions – these efforts help build the conditions for enduring peace.
The US is also advancing improvements and reforms in several key areas: providing missions with achievable and realistic mandates; building the capacity of troop- and police-contributing countries and providing them the necessary resources to effectively and safely implement those mandates; enhancing peacekeeper performance, accountability, safety, and security; and preventing sexual exploitation and abuse by peacekeepers and holding perpetrators accountable.
While the United States is the largest financial contributor to UN peacekeeping, it also contributes key, scarce capabilities to UN peacekeeping and invests heavily in long-term bilateral capacity-building partnerships through the Global Peace Operations Initiative and the International Police Peacekeeping Operations Support program.
UN peacekeeping continues to be one of the most effective mechanisms for promoting international peace and security and protecting the world’s most vulnerable populations. The United States is committed to strengthening and reforming UN peacekeeping to help make it as effective and efficient as possible in delivering on its vital global mission.