UN Peacekeepers

Context: Indian Army officer Major Radhika Sen will be receiving the UN Military Gender Advocate of the Year award on May 30 from UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award
•    The Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award is observed on the International Day of UN Peacekeepers. This prestigious award recognizes the efforts of military peacekeepers in promoting the principles outlined  in  the  2000  Security  Council resolution.  This  resolution  emphasizes 
the  protection  of  women  and  girls  from  conflict-related  sexual  violence  and  outlines  gender-related responsibilities for the United Nations.
•    Ms. Radhika Sen is the second Indian peacekeeper to receive this honor, following Major Suman Gawani, who was awarded in 2019 for her service with the UN Mission in South Sudan.


•    Ms.  Sen  served  with  the  Organization  Stabilization  Mission  in  the  Democratic  Republic  of  the  Congo (MONUSCO). Her significant contributions include:
- Community Alert Networks: Ms. Sen helped establish the Community Alert Networks in North Kivu. This platform enabled community leaders, young people, and women to voice their security and humanitarian concerns.
- Engagement with Conflict-Affected Communities: Through her humility, compassion, and dedication, Ms. Sen earned the trust of conflict-affected communities, including women and girls. Her troops engaged with these communities in an escalating conflict environment.
- Mixed-Gender Engagement Patrols: Ms. Sen led mixed-gender engagement patrols and activities, creating a safe space for men and women to operate together under her command. Her leadership made her a role model for both genders.

International Day of UN Peacekeepers

• The United Nations General Assembly officially established the International Day of UN Peacekeepers in 2002. The day honors the professionalism, dedication, and courage of all men and women who have served in UN peacekeeping operations. The theme for the 2024 International Day of UN Peacekeepers is “Fit for the future, building better together.”

UN Peacekeeping Role

• The UN\'s Department of Peace Operations is responsible for peacekeeping, a vital tool developed to help countries in conflict create lasting peace conditions. UN peacekeepers, who can be soldiers, police officers, and civilian personnel, operate under the authority granted by Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. This chapter empowers the UN Security Council to maintain international peace and security.
•    UN peacekeepers are instrumental in supporting countries transitioning from conflict to peace, ensuring stability, and protecting vulnerable populations, particularly women and girls, from conflict-related violence.

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