Saturday, June 01, 2013

Vietnam to join UN peacekeeping operations

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung said Friday his country will start taking part in United Nations peacekeeping operations in non-combat roles.

Dung made the announcement during a keynote speech at the Shangri-La Dialogue, an Asia-Pacific security forum that gathers top defence and military officials from around the world.

"At this prestigious forum, I have the honour to announce that Vietnam has decided to participate in UN peacekeeping operations, first in such areas as military engineering, military medicine and military observation," he said.

The prime minister did not give other details.

Edmond Mulet, the UN Assistant Secretary-General of Peacekeeping Operations, visited Vietnam in February to help the country prepare to join the organisation's peacekeeping force by next year, according to Vietnamese media reports.

There were currently 15 peacekeeping operations worldwide as of March, with 116 countries contributing military and police personnel to the effort, the UN website says.

The world body does not have its own military force and depends on contributions from member states. - Channel News Asia

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