UN peacekeeping is a “very important component” of keeping the world safe and secure, and Bangladesh remains “fully committed” to contributing men — and increasingly women — to serve.
Maj Gen Mohammad Humayun Kabir of Bangladesh, who is currently the Force Commander of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), said this recently.
Highlighting Bangladesh’s commitment to foster women peacekeepers and police, and increase the numbers who serve by 2020 and beyond, he said it was “virtually impossible” to protect civilians who rely on UN peacekeeping missions around the world, without the participation of women.
The UN Force Commander said there were 157 Bangladeshi women peacekeepers currently serving, and more than 1,400 had been deployed throughout the world in total over the years, including an all-female Bangladeshi Formed Police Unit that served in Haiti between 2015 and 2017.
“Personally, I believe, it’s very important that you have gender parity, particularly the participation of female peacekeepers,” he said.
Maj Gen Humayan mentioned that in today’s modern “multi-dimensional” peacekeeping missions focusing on civilian protection, “your situational awareness is much-better and naturally your performance will also be better.”
He said that majority-Muslim Bangladesh was committed to having what he called a “female engagement platoon” in every mission where they contribute troops and police, according to UN News Centre.
Maj Gen Humayan said there was widespread public support for women playing an active role in public service across a wide range of sectors.
He also praised the “tremendous” support that Bangladeshi blue helmets receive at home, for their work across ten peacekeeping missions, as it currently stands.
“The Bangladesh government is always more than willing to make sure that the contingents who are deployed; they are properly trained, properly equipped so they are fit for purpose – fit for the mission.”
He said despite suffering the loss of 135 peacekeepers on active duty over the years, Bangladesh was proud of the fact that it is consistently among the top three troop-contributing countries, or TCCs.