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PH Ambassador witnesses Medal Pinning Ceremony of PH police contingent to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan

NAIROBI -- Philippine Ambassador to South Sudan (with residence in Nairobi, Kenya) Marie Charlotte G. Tang witnessed the medal pinning ceremony of the 20 officers of the Philippine National Police (PNP) who are part of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), held on 16 August 2023 at the UN House, Juba, South Sudan.

The ceremony is traditionally held to recognize the services rendered by the peacekeepers as they near the completion of their tour of duty in the mission area. The current PNP contingent arrived in South Sudan in batches between October and December 2022.

In her remarks, Ambassador Tang commended the Filipino peacekeepers for heeding the call of service and contributing to the transformation process of South Sudan, the world's youngest country.

Ambassador Tang emphasized how the Philippines' participation in the UNMISS builds on the country's six decades of active participation in UN peacekeeping operations. She reaffirmed the Philippines' continuing commitment to UN peacekeeping as the country's contribution to the maintenance of international peace and security.

Ambassador Tang also encouraged the Filipino peacekeepers to continue being agents and advocates of peace as they return to their respective communities in the Philippines.

UN Police (UNPOL) Commissioner for UNMISS Christine Fossen commended the Filipino peacekeepers for their professionalism, dedication, and passion for peace. She also cited the Philippines’ “sterling reputation” in peacekeeping and thanked the Philippine Government for sending highly competent peacekeepers whose work are vital to the mandate of UNMISS, setting a benchmark for future missions.

Philippine non-resident Ambassador to South Sudan Marie Charlotte G. Tang (back row, eighth from left) with the 20 police officers from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and one military expert from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) who are currently part of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) (Photo from PCol. Cheryl Yatar)

The Filipino police peacekeepers are deployed to the main UNMISS headquarters in Juba and in field offices across South Sudan. Among the positions and tasks that they handle are on personnel administration, logistics, technical advisory, planning and budgeting, public information, field office command, and capacity-building for the local police force.

The PNP officers, majority of whom are females, have also been supporting their South Sudanese counterparts on basic Gender and Development (GAD) concepts and on handling violence against women and children (VAWC) cases. This is in line with the Philippines' strong international advocacy on gender equality and women empowerment (GEWE) and promoting greater participation of women in peacekeeping and peacebuilding.

The PNP officers, most of whom are also first-timers in a UN mission, expressed their gratitude for the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the people of South Sudan.

UNMISS was created in July 2011 through the UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1996. It is mandated to support the consolidation of peace and security, and establish the conditions for development, following South Sudan’s independence. (Philippine Embassy in Kenya)

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