In news– India has launched a ‘Group of Friends’ to promote accountability for crimes against peacekeepers during India’s current presidency of the U.N. Security Council.
About the group-
- India, Bangladesh, Egypt, France, Morocco and Nepal are co-chairs of the ‘Group of Friends.
- It represents the “political will” of member states, particularly of the troop and police contributing countries, to champion the implementation of the provisions of U.N. Security Council resolution 2589, which was adopted in August 2021 under India’s Presidency of the Council
- Resolution 2589 had called upon member states, hosting or having hosted United Nations peacekeeping operations, to take all appropriate measures to bring to justice perpetrators of the killing of, and all acts of violence against United Nations personnel, including, but not limited to, their detention and abduction.
- The resolution had also called on member states to take all necessary measures to investigate such acts and arrest and prosecute perpetrators of such acts in line with their national law, consistent with applicable international obligations, including under international humanitarian law.
- The UNSC resolution was co-sponsored by more than 80 member states and unanimously adopted by the Council.
- A concept note on the Group of Friends said that it will seek to facilitate the promotion of accountability for all acts of violence against United Nations peacekeepers; seek facilitation of capacity building and technical assistance to the host state authorities.
- It will actively engage and share information with the Secretary-General and assist the member states hosting or those who have hosted peacekeeping operations, in bringing to justice the perpetrators of such acts; serve as an informal platform at the United Nations to exchange information, share best practices and mobilise resources directed at facilitating accountability for crimes committed against peacekeepers; and monitor progress on bringing accountability for crimes against peacekeepers.
- The Group of Friends will convene two meetings of its members per year, organise and host one event per year involving Permanent Missions and other stakeholders, designed to inform and galvanise support for promoting accountability for crimes against peacekeepers; and organize and hold other meetings, briefings, and events as needed, based on the annual work plan and developments relevant to safety and security of peacekeepers.
- The Group will convene and be moderated by representatives of the Permanent Missions of Bangladesh, Egypt, France India, Morocco and Nepal as co-chairs and include all interested Member States and United Nations partners.
Note:India, among the largest troop-contributing countries to UN peacekeeping, has lost 177 of its peacekeepers in the line of duty, the largest by far from any troop-contributing country.
Further reading: https://journalsofindia.com/indias-role-in-un-peacekeeping-missions/