The Vietnamese high-ranking military delegation was led by Senior Lieutenant General Pham Ngoc Minh, Vice Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People’s Army and Deputy Chairman of the Defense Ministry's Steering Committee for Vietnam's participation in UN peacekeeping operations.

On November 14, delegates joined discussions in two seminars “The youth as Peace builders” and “The role of the private sector in conflict prevention.” Particularly, they underlined the important role of young people worldwide in contributing to maintaining global peace with practical measures, such as military and diplomatic initiatives to promptly prevent conflicts, preventative diplomacy, and trust-building.

Head delegates in a group photo 
On the following day, they discussed pledges to protect peace in the world, such as Smart Pledges (which serve as an enabler in their own right and provide the predictability of supply that is needed to enhance a mission’s chance of long-term success), Innovation in Training and Capacity Building, Protecting Those at Risk, and Early Warning and Rapid Deployment.

In his speech at the event, General Minh stressed Vietnam’s willingness towards those aforementioned topics, highlighting that Vietnam will for the first time send a level-two field hospital to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) in the second quarter of 2018 and is ready to deploy a combined engineer company to a UN mission, expecting to be UNMISS, by 2019.

Vietnam commits to training their peacekeepers according to UN criteria, especially the subject of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA), he added.

Senior Lieutenant General Pham Ngoc Minh (R) presenting a gift to Mr. Philippe Errera, Director of Strategic Affairs of the Ministry for Defense of France
The Vietnamese delegation’s head shared the country’s experiences and pledged to actively and proactively cooperate with countries and partners, who are experienced in UN peacekeeping operations, specially with regard to  recruiting and training sessions for peacekeepers.

Over the past time, Vietnam’s partner countries like the US, the UK and Australia opened basic and advanced English training courses for Vietnamese officers who would  serve  the UN peacekeeping missions. Vietnam used UN’s primary manuals, such as Core Pre-deployment Training Materials (CPTM) and Specialized Training Materials (STM), and also invited international experienced instructors and those who had served in UN peacekeeping missions to train their troops, General Minh said.

The Deputy Chief of the VPA’s General Staff emphasized that in the coming time, Vietnam expects to shake hands with its partner countries, international organizations, and the UN as well to open more training courses with the aim of heightening competencies of the would-be Vietnamese peacekeepers.

Additionally, Vietnam aims to form an experienced contingent of instructors, who are able to lecture at peacekeeping operations training courses inside and outside the country, he concluded.

On the sidelines of the conference, General Minh met with heads of delegations from the host Canada, the UK, France, New Zealand, and the Republic of Korea.

Translated by Van Hieu