Senate debates

Thursday, 10 May 2018


International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers

11:54 am

Photo of Anne UrquhartAnne Urquhart (Tasmania, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

I seek leave to add Senator Moore's name to general business notice of motion No. 814.

Leave granted.

At the request of Senators Singh and Moore, I move:

That the Senate:

(a) notes that:

  (i) in 1948, the UN General Assembly, in resolution 57/129, designated 29 May as the International Day of UN Peacekeepers,

  (ii) in acknowledgement of its 70th anniversary, the theme for 2018 is 'UN Peacekeeping: 70 years of Service and Sacrifice',

  (iii) UN peacekeeping is a collective investment in global peace, security and stability and has developed as a dynamic instrument to assist countries torn by conflict to create conditions for lasting peace,

  (iv) this day:

(A) honours the memory of those who have lost their lives, serving under the UN flag, in the cause of peace, and

(B) pays tribute to the professionalism, dedication and courage of all men and women who continue to serve in peacekeeping operations,

  (v) UN peacekeepers protect civilians, make efforts to prevent conflict, reduce violence, strengthen security and empower national authorities to assume these responsibilities by aiding them in creating sustainable frameworks for long-term peace,

  (vi) in the period of 70 years, more than one million men and women have served in 57 completed peacekeeping operations and 14 ongoing operations, helping countries transition from a state of war to peace,

  (vii) UN peacekeeping operations receive contributions of military, police personnel and equipment from 124 member-states, including Australia,

  (viii) Australian peacekeepers are currently serving in the Middle East UN Truce Supervision Organisation (UNTSO) and the UN Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UN MISS), and

  (ix) Australia's contribution to UN peacekeeping contribution is ranked 81, with about 32 personnel deployed to missions,

(b) appreciates the efforts of UN peacekeepers for their commitment to maintaining global peace and stability; and

(c) urges the Australian Government to continue participating in UN peacekeeping missions and, where possible, increase the number of personnel deployed to assist in training and ongoing peacekeeping efforts around the world.

Photo of James McGrathJames McGrath (Queensland, Liberal National Party, Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister) Share this | | Hansard source

I seek leave to make a short statement.

Photo of Sue LinesSue Lines (WA, Deputy-President) Share this | | Hansard source

Leave is granted for one minute.

Photo of James McGrathJames McGrath (Queensland, Liberal National Party, Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister) Share this | | Hansard source

Australia has a proud history of contributing to UN peacekeeping missions, which aim to provide security and stability in conflict affected countries. In addition to traditional peacekeeping activities, modern missions also aim to ensure a sustainable peace, including through efforts such as protecting civilians, assisting in disarming combatants, work to prevent the recruitment of child soldiers and assisting with free and fair elections. Australia is a significant and reliable contributor to UN peacekeeping. We've been engaged in UN peacekeeping for 70 years and have served in 21 UN peacekeeping operations.

Question agreed to.