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India co-sponsors UNSC resolution on women peacekeepers

India has co-sponsored the Indonesian resolution on women peacekeepers that calls for increasing the “deployment of uniformed women to peacekeeping operations”.

The Indian mission to United Nations in a statement said, “We are proud to co-sponsor the UN Security Council resolution on women in peacekeeping that calls for full, effective and meaningful participation of women in peacekeeping operation”.

The statement further said, “in line with the priorities we have set for ourselves during our tenure in the security council beginning 2021, India will continue to push for greater involvement of women in all areas”

The resolution has been voted on and the results will be announced at 4 am IST on Saturday or 6.30 pm New York time. The resolution asked UN member states to provide “access to training for uniformed women personnel” and develop a “national database of trained women personnel interested” in deployment.

According to 2019 figures, only 6 percent of UN peacekeepers are women. In all, of the 86,687 peacekeepers, 5,243 are female.

The resolution explicitly mentions that “gender-sensitive working environments for women in peacekeeping operations” should be developed and any “threats and violence against them” should be addressed.

It also “requested” the UN Secretary-General to strengthen efforts to “prevent and address sexual harassment” within peacekeeping operations

New Delhi has been sending women peacekeepers almost since the beginning, for instance, as early as 1960 it sent women in the Armed Forces Medical Services to Congo.

In 2007, India was the first country to send an all-women UN Peacekeeping mission to the West African country of Liberia.

Earlier this year, Indian Women peacekeeper Major Suman Gawani won the UN Military Gender Advocate award. She served as a peacekeeper with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan.

India is one of the largest troop contributors to the UN Peacekeeping force.