156 Vietnamese Engineers Head to UN Peacekeeping Mission in Disputed Abyei
A ceremony took place on June 12 to bid farewell to the remaining 156 members of Vietnam’s Engineering Unit Rotation 1, as they left for peacekeeping duty at the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA), VOV reported.
|The advance team on their way to the UNISFA Mission. Photo: qdnd.vn|
The sappers will travel to the UN’s logistics base station in Uganda to carry out preparations for their mission in Abyei, an area on the border between South Sudan and Sudan, and then move on to a UN transit base 200 kilometers from Abyei.
The first 28 engineers were deployed to Abyei in May for field reconnaissance to prepare for the rainy season and build barracks.
Together with level 2 field hospitals, the team will provide humanitarian assistance, help the UN Peacekeeping Mission carry out their tasks, maintain peace, and rebuild the country.
The first Engineers Team was launched in late 2021, as the first sapper team and the largest unit to be sent by Vietnam to UN peacekeeping operations.
Since 2014, Vietnam has actively contributed to the UN peacekeeping force and in 2018, the country provided aid for the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). From the end of March, more than 2,000 tonnes of equipment and goods serving the unit have been delivered to the mission in Abyei by sea.
Before leaving to carry out the UN peacekeeping mission, the Vietnam Peacekeeping Department proactively reviewed and organized visits to families with extremely difficult circumstances and families with close relatives are critically ill patients. In addition, the policies for officers and employees in the unit are also guaranteed to be correct, sufficient and timely according to regulations.
Engineering Unit Rotation 1 has coordinated with functional units of the Vietnam Peacekeeping Department, Party committees and local authorities to visit 18 families with extremely difficult circumstances and families with relatives suffering from serious diseases, thereby enhancing understanding between the unit, family and locality, leaving a good impression about the spirit of solidarity and mutual assistance of officials and employees in the unit.
|The first members from Việt Nam's Engineering Unit Rotation 1 arrived at the UNISFA Mission in Abyei in May. Photo Courtesy of the Vietnam Peacekeeping Department|
The UN Security Council in May had renewed the mandate of the UN peacekeeping force in Abyei, a territory contested by Sudan and South Sudan, by six months, till Nov. 15, 2022.
Resolution 2630 also decides to extend the peacekeeping mission's mandate modification till Nov. 15, 2022.
It urges the governments of Sudan and South Sudan to provide full support for UNISFA in the implementation of its mandate and deployment of UNISFA personnel. It reiterates that Abyei shall be demilitarized from any forces, as well as armed elements of the local communities, other than UNISFA and the Abyei Police Service.
Sudan and South Sudan signed an agreement on the disputed Abyei region on June 20, 2011 under which they pledged to withdraw troops from the demilitarised zone. However, they haven’t obtained much substantive progress in the agreement implementation.
UNISFA, set up in 2011 under UNSC Resolution 1990, was tasked with protecting civilians and promoting demilitarisation in Abyei. It was supplemented with the duty of supporting the Joint Border Verification and Monitoring Mechanism (JBVMM) in this region under Resolution 2024 on December 14, 2011.
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