By HONG XIAO at the United Nations
China's envoy to the United Nations said his country would continue contributing to building UN peacekeeping capacity and honor its commitment to world peace with concrete action.
Addressing an open debate on Training and Capacity Building for UN Peacekeeping Missions on Tuesday at UN headquarters in New York, China's permanent representative to the body Ma Zhaoxu said that China, as a permanent member of the Security Council, was a major Troop Contributing Country (TCC) and financial contributor to Peacekeeping Operations (PKOs).
At present, over 2,500 Chinese peacekeepers are implementing mandates in eight task areas, working in such fields as land-mine removal, medical services, engineering, transportation and security.
China attaches great importance to training and capacity building of peacekeepers, he added. "The Chinese peacekeepers are well-trained, well-equipped and well-disciplined," Ma said.
Ma said China is fully implementing the commitment made by President Xi Jinping to further support UN PKOs.
Ma noted that a standby peacekeeping force of over 8,000 troops and two standby peacekeeping police contingents have been established and all have passed UN inspection.
"They can be put into operation at any time," he said.
In addition to its own efforts, Ma said China has also been actively helping TCCs, especially developing countries, in their capacity building.
China will continue to work actively on providing the African Union (AU) with military assistance worth $100 million and an additional $80 million to help "Africa advance its Africa standby force and rapid reaction force and support Africa in its efforts to enhance its own peacekeeping capacity," he said.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres told the Council that better training for peacekeepers being deployed to increasingly hostile environments was a "necessary and strategic" investment that can also save lives.
He said "notable progress" had been made in training 'blue helmets' and others who serve in some of the most dangerous places on earth, but "much still needs to be done".
Guterres said that beyond preparation, training improves performance. "And as we know, improved performance, reduces fatalities. As such, training is a necessary and strategic investment in peacekeeping — and is a shared responsibility between Member States and the Secretariat,"he added.