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About Us

Peacekeeping

On 13th October 1970, Fiji was admitted to the United Nations General Assembly as the first Pacific Island State to join the United Nations. Since that time, Fiji has had at the heart of its foreign policy a strong commitment to the United Nations and its peacekeeping operations.

Since the 1970s, Fijian peacekeepers have served in Angola, Bosnia & Herzegovinia, Cambodia, Croatia, Dafur, Iraq, Kosovo, Lebanon, Liberia, Sinai, Namibia, Solomon Islands, Kosovo, Rwanda, Somalia, Southern Sudan and Timor-Leste.

The high standards achieved by Fijian personnel in UN peacekeeping has been a focus of national pride and has earned Fiji considerable distinction in the international community. Fiji honours the memory of the 46 Fijian peacekeepers who have fallen in the course of peacekeeping duties.

Today the largest contingent of overseas Fijian peacekeepers serves with the Multinational Force & Observers (MFO) in the Sinai. The MFO is an independent international organization, headquartered in Rome, with peacekeeping responsibilities relating to the Egyptian-Israeli border. From the first days of the mission in 1982, the Republic of Fiji Military Forces has provided an infantry battalion to the MFO, currently consisting of 338 personnel.

The second largest contingent of Fijian peacekeepers today is in Iraq, supporting the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), as established by Security Council in 2003. After the UN’s brief pullout from Iraq following the tragic 2003 bombings that killed 22 UN staff, Fiji played an integral part in the re-establishment of the UN presence in Iraq by becoming the first nation to volunteer peacekeepers specifically to protect UN officials. Today 223 troops serve in Baghdad securing UN operations in Baghdad and Erbil.

The United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) was established in 2003 to monitor the ceasefire agreement in Liberia. UNMIL is currently is supported by 30 police officers from Fiji. In the Darfur region of Sudan, the first joint-force of African Union and United Nations Peacekeepers (UNAMID) is tasked with bringing stability to this war-torn region. Established by the Security Council in 2007, UNAMID is currently supported by 13 police officers from Fiji.

In Southern Sudan, the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS) was established in 2005. Its goal is to support the implementation of the peace agreement between Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement. Fiji is currently participating in UNMIS with 11 military and police personnel. In 2006, the Security Council established the United Nations Integrated Mission in East Timor (UNMIT). Fiji has dispatched a military observer to Timor-Leste in support of UNMIT.

Fiji’s main motivation in its contribution of peacekeeping personnel to the United Nations is its determination to play its full part as a responsible signatory of the United Nations Charter. For small countries like Fiji, the international rule of law and peace is a guarantee for independence and survival for the smaller Member States of the UN. Fiji’s involvement in peacekeeping and peace-building worldwide is thus a prime manifestation of Fiji’s commitment to good global citizenship through the multilateralism of the United Nations.

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    Ministry of Foreign Affairs
   
P. O. Box 2220
   
Government Buildings
   
Suva, Fiji
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Tel: (679) 330 9645
Levels 1&2, South Wing, iTaukei Trust Fund Complex, 87 Queen Elizabeth Drive, Nasese

 

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