Jean-Peirre Lacroix: We like to see more Ethiopians under the “Blue Helmet”

During a meeting with Foreign Minister Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu this morning (January 30, 2018) the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean Peirre Lacroix praised Ethiopia for its resolute commitment to ensuring Global peace , adding the U.N. would like to see more Ethiopian peace-keepers under the "Blue Helmet."

Dr. Workneh, on the occasion, noted as a global public is living in a fast-paced and interconnected world, complex challenges with far-reaching security concerns arise. The Minister said, Ethiopia fully cognizant of such facts would continue to commit itself for a Global peace and security.

Briefing the Under Secretary on regional peace and security issues, Dr. Workneh underscored on the urgent need to further re-enforce the security structure in Somalia despite commendable progresses witnessed in the country both in economic and political arrays over the years. Dr. Workneh called for a closer cooperation between stakeholders to witness a lasting peace and prosperity in Somalia.

The Minister, regarding the peace process in South Sudan, has dubbed IGAD Revitalization Process as a relevant platform to ensure a meaningful peace in South Sudan. Recalling the strong messages reiterated at the 60th Extraordinary Session of the IGAD Council of Ministers that "perpetrators of the violations should be held accountable", Dr. Workneh noted the messages have showcased IGAD's unflinching commitment to ensure lasting solution to the prolonged war and senseless violence which has caused and still continues to inflict misery upon the people of South Sudan. The Minister added the second Revitalization Forum scheduled to be held in the first week on February would give further impetus to the peace process.

Mr. Jean Peirre noted the U.N was working in close collaboration with the AU, the IGAD and other viable platforms in areas of peace and security as well as undertaking capacity building programs in security infrastructure and manpower to see a better place to live in. Mr. Peirre called on parties to the Revitalization Process in South Sudan to seize rare opportunities like this one to once and for all end the miseries of their fellow people which therefor entail deeper commitments. Mr. Peirre also praised Ethiopian peace keepers under United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) for winning trust from both sides of the warring parties. The Under Secretary has also noted that he equally shared Dr. Workneh's call on the need to increase Ethiopia's police personnel at the U.N.

Ethiopia is the number one troop provider to the U.N. with 8,326 peacekeepers on the ground, according to the UN.