Statement by Brig Gen AKM Akhtaruzzaman, ndc, psc, Defence Adviser of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh to the UN at the Fourth Committee on Comprehensive Review of the whole Question of Peacekeeping Operations in all their aspects (agenda Item 56), New York, 12 November 2015
Mr. Chairman, Excellencies and colleagues. Good afternoon. Let me join my previous speakers in thanking you for the leadership you provided to the Bureau.
Mr. Chairman, I also thank Under Secretary General for Peacekeeping Mr. Herve Ladsous and Under Secretary General for Field Support, Mr. Atul Khare for their comprehensive briefing and giving the current perspective on peacekeeping operations.
Mr. Chairman, Bangladesh aligns itself with the NAM statement on peacekeeping. In our national capacity we would like to flag a few issues.
Mr. Chairman, our commitment to UN peacekeeping is strong and steadfast. As one of the leading troop and police contributing countries, Bangladesh has a vital stake in the effectiveness of peace operations. We recognize that the range and context of peacekeeping are rapidly changing. With the evolving nature of peace operations we have constantly updated our deployment capabilities. We have demonstrated capacity to deploy at high-risk, complex missions at a very short notice. In Mali and Central African Republic we were the quickest to deploy troops under blue helmet.
We acknowledge the need for improving rapid deployment and force generation at start-up missions. The call for stronger protection of civilians is gaining momentum for obvious reasons. We are ready, as always, to strengthen the hands of UN in these fields. However, we must remember that peacekeeping is one of the tools of POC. Thus efforts of other stakeholders and partners must also be strengthened to this effect. On the other hand in some of the missions the efforts to strengthen protection measures of the peacekeepers need more attention.
Mr. Chairman, we recognize the need for modernization of peacekeepers with new technologies. We have a state-of- the- art Institute for Peace Support operations and Training (BIPSOT). We are developing it as a centre of excellence for training peacekeepers. We also commit to provide customized training, joint exercises and technical support to other TCCs and PCCs. Besides, we promote protection of civilians, gender and human right issues and language skills of our peacekeepers through training. We also strongly advocate ‘zero tolerance’ on sexual misconduct by peacekeepers.
We have also supported actions to give effect to the recommendations of the High Level Independent Panel. I may make a mention that the first regional consultation of the Panel was held in our Capital very successfully. At the same time we endorse and appreciate the Secretary General’s report on the implementation of the HIPPO report. We also offer to engage further on the constructive ideas put forwarded by the Secretary General in his report.
Mr. Chairman, we have made a number of pledges of both enablers, infantry and formed police units including utility helicopters in the last Leaders’ Summit. The pledge signifies our continued commitment and full support for UN peacekeeping. You may also note that we are one of the first countries to register our pledges through the newly introduced “Peacekeeping Capability Readiness System” (PCRS).
Mr. Chairman, we appreciate that peacekeeping operations are in better shape and being handled more seriously than ever before. With renewed commitments from many new countries peacekeeping will surely be strengthened and will help improve both “protection of civilians” as well as “protection of our peacekeepers”. In this regard we urge upon on the importance of gathering timely and effective human intelligence. Though the effort has gain momentum, but it seems a lot more is yet to be done.
UN Peacekeeping is temporal and to have sustainable peace, stability and security, we need to create a mindset of tolerance and respect for each other irrespective of ethnicity, color, background, and religion. We are confident that if we commit more resources to create such a mindset, we would succeed and see a more peaceful planet away from violence, misunderstanding and war and terror.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman.