ISLAMABAD              -        Pakistan yesterday said it was proud of its ‘blue helmets’ as they continue to embody country’s unwavering commitment to world peace

Pakistan joins the international community in celebrating “International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers,” said a Foreign Ministry statement.

As a consistent leading troop contributing country, it said, Pakistan was cognizant of the important role played by UN peacekeepers in maintaining security and stability in so many of the world’s conflict zones.

“We salute the services and sacrifices rendered by peacekeepers from around the world and reiterate our solemn commitment to continue working with the United Nations for the ideals of peace, stability and cooperation espoused by the blue helmets,” the statement said.

Pakistan, it said, was proud of its long-standing contributions to UN peacekeeping spanning over six decades.  “Our peacekeepers have earned well deserved respect and goodwill for their professionalism and devotion to duty in every mission they have participated in,” the statement said.

Since 1960, over 200,000 of our servicemen have served with honor and distinction in 46 UN missions in 26 countries in almost all continents of the world.  One hundred and fifty-seven of gallant Pakistani peacekeepers have made the ultimate sacrifice for the cause of international peace and security.

Pakistan has also led the way in deputing female peacekeepers in a record time. In 2019, Pakistan met the 15 percent benchmark set by the UN Secretariat in the staff officers’ category. Our lady police officer Shahzadi Gulfam was the first ever recipient of International Female Police Peacekeeper Award in 2011.

“Our contribution to peacekeeping on ground has been complemented by our sustained engagement in policy development in peacekeeping. We bring a unique perspective to peacekeeping as a leading troop contributing country as well as a host country to one of the oldest peacekeeping missions, UNMOGIP,” the foreign ministry statement said.

It added: “On this day, we reaffirm our commitment to ensure that peacekeeping remains a potent mechanism of maintaining peace, security and stability in the world.”