Home >News >India >UN needs to re-evaluate structures governing peace missions: Indian Army chief

NEW DELHI : The United Nations needs re-evaluate processes and structures governing peace keeping missions, Indian Army Chief Manoj Mukund Naravane has said, adding that the body should look at adopting flexible doctrines.

Speaking at an Army Chiefs’ Conclave in Dhaka on Sunday on the Changing Nature of Global Conflicts: Role of UN Peacekeepers," Naravane also called on the UN to cater for economic constraints given the covid-19 pandemic. Naravane was in Dhaka on a five-day official tour. India and Bangladesh are jointly commemorating 50 years of the emergence of Bangladesh as an independent country after the 1971 India-Pakistan war. India, Pakistan and Bangladesh are among the largest contributors of soldiers for UN peacekeeping missions around the world.

In his speech, Naravane pointed out that UN peacekeeping missions were originally designed to support inter-state ceasefires and peace agreements.

But “modern peacekeeping operations have transformed to address intra-state conflicts and situations involving asymmetric use of force," he said. “The focus of peacekeeping operations should be to create favourable conditions to include disarmament and neutralisation of negative forces, establishing rule of law and protection of civilians," he said.

On its part, the UN should be “pragmatic in defining the mandate of the mission" and peace keeping operations should be designed with a “realistic exit strategy" coupled with definable objectives and missions," the Indian Army chief said.

Troop contributing countries should look at building capacities for greater “interoperability with regional forces" under a UN mandate to reduce time and costs, he said.

“Maintaining a reserve of peacekeepers within the conflict zone or with the member state(s) as Rapidly Deployable Forces with dedicated mobility assets" would help in the speedy deployment of forces, he said.

Operations that are carried out should be intelligence based, with the protection of civilians and human rights prioritized. The aim of the mission should be extending the rule of law, bringing together different parties through dialogue, build trust that leads to disarmament, he said.

Troops contributing countries should provide tactical force multipliers like “UAVs unmanned aerial vehicles or drones) surveillance devices and modern communication equipment," he added.

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