Countries contributing troops to United Nations peacekeeping (UNPK) missions need greater say in the conduct of the operations they are part of, Army Chief Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag said today.
He rued that some countries which have contributed less to such missions have a greater say.
“The troop-contributing countries must have and need to have a say as far as change of any mandate, task or policy formulation is concerned,” he said at a seminar organised by the army’s think tank CLAWS.
Suhag stressed that the concerns of stakeholders have to be taken care of.
“We find that there are countries which have very few contributions, by way of observers or staff officers, but they do form part of policy coordination. But troop-contributing countries have very little say as far as such issues are concerned,” he said.
Noting that the nature of peacekeeping has changed from the traditional “peacekeeping to peace enforcement”, Suhag emphasised on the need for force restructuring.
He had spoken on the issue in March at the world body’s first-ever ‘Chiefs of Defence’ Conference that had brought together army chiefs and senior military officials from more than 110 UN member states to discuss issues central to UN peacekeeping.
India has so far participated in 49 UN peacekeeping missions, contributing over 1,80,000 troops and a significant number of police personnel.
India is at present participating in 12 out of the 16 active missions and 158 Indian peacekeepers have made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty over the past six decades, the highest among all member states.
India had in the past also voiced concern that UNSC has repeatedly “violated” and “diluted” the clear provisions of Article 44 of the UN Charter, which explicitly requires the 15-nation Council to invite member states which are contributing troops but are not members of the Council, to participate in the decisions on peacekeeping and troop deployment.