#PK70: 7 things you (probably) didn't know about the participation of women in peacekeeping operations
As UN peacekeeping operations increasingly included humanitarian approaches, women became more and more present. In tandem with this trend, the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) uses various approaches to ensure that gender equality is at the heart of its activities. Did you know that women are actually indispensable in peacekeeping? At the 70th anniversary of peacekeeping, learn 7 things about women blue helmets.
#1 More women blue helmets = more efficient peakeeping
More women in peacekeeping means more effective peacekeeping. Women are deployed in all areas – police, military and civilian – and have made a positive impact on peacekeeping environments, in supporting the role of women in building peace, protecting women's rights and contributing, on an equal basis with men, to the success of any mission.
#2 Kristin Lund: the 1st women to become a Peace Commander
In August 2014, Major General Lund of Norway assumed the post of Force Commander of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), becoming the first woman to serve as Force Commander in a United Nations peacekeeping operation. She completed her tour in Cyprus in 2016. In 2017, she was appointed as the Head of Mission and Chief of Staff of the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO).
#3 The peacekeeping operational imperative
In all fields of peacekeeping, women peacekeepers have proven that they can perform the same roles, to the same standards and under the same difficult conditions, as their male counterparts. Recruiting and retaining female peacekeepers is an operational imperative.
#4 Nayma Haque & Tamanna-E-Lutfi: our two first female pilotes
In 2017, Bangladesh, long one of the largest contributors to UN Peacekeeping, deployed women pilots for the first time when they sent Flight Lieutenants Nayma Haque and Tamanna-E-Lutfi to serve with the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). Here, the two officers stand proudly in front of their helicopter.
#5 Women blue helmets : an inspiration for all
Female peacekeepers deployed around the world serve as role models for everyone. Here, Lebanese teenagers attending an International Women’s Day event take a selfie with women peacekeepers serving with the UN mission operating in the country (UNIFIL).
#6 Lebanon: the first 100% female patrole
On 13 December 2017, the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) conducted its first all-female foot patrol in Rmeish with the participation of peacekeepers from six countries – Ghana, Ireland, Italy, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia and the Netherlands. According to the UNIFIL Force Commander and Head of Mission, Major General Michael Beary, “I think the value added by our female peacekeepers is really incredible. Patrolling gives them the chance to interact with the local communities.”
#7 Addressing gender based violence
Gladys Ngwepekeum Nkeh, a UN Police officer from Cameroon, serves as a gender officer with the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA). Here, Gladys conducts a class on gender violence in city of Bangui. She also works to prevent human rights violations and among the many people she has helped was a young girl who became pregnant after being raped. The young girl named her baby Gladys to honor the peacekeeper who provided her so much assistance and attention.