Senior Lieutenant General Pham Ngoc Minh, Deputy Chief of the General Staff and Deputy Head of the Ministry of National Defense’s Steering Board for Vietnam's participation in UN peacekeeping operations, led the Vietnamese delegation to the event.

The conference was attended by heads of the defense forces from more than 140 UN member countries which engage in peacekeeping activities, along with representatives of such organizations as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union, and the African Union.

Sr. Lt. Gen. Pham Ngoc Minh (second row, second from right) attends the Chiefs of Defense Conference on United Nations peacekeeping operations in New York.

In his opening remarks, UN Under-Secretary-General Jean-Pierre Lacroix highly valued substantial contributions by countries volunteering peacekeepers, including Vietnam, to the peace stabilization, war consequences settlement, humanitarian aid to refugees, and environmental protection.

He stressed the need for higher unanimity in the UN member countries’ resolve to cope with existing urgent issues that affect the future of peacekeeping operations such as field assistance, women’s role, swift force deployment, and some measures for improving the efficiency of the peacekeeping force.

At the conference, many member nations showed their support for UN resolutions on peacekeeping and shared experience in commanding and managing the peacekeeping force.

Many of them also appreciated efforts by countries which have just taken part in UN peacekeeping operations recently, including Vietnam. Vietnam was recognized as a country with clear political commitments and concrete and firm steps in its road-map to participating in UN peacekeeping operations.

On the sidelines of the conference, the Vietnamese delegation had working sessions and meetings with defense officers of the UK, Japan, the Philippines and Thailand.

At a meeting with Gen. Chris Deverell – Commander of the UK’s Joint Forces Command, the two sides talked about the takeover of a level-2 field hospital in Bentiu, South Sudan, and the sending of experts to help Vietnam in specialized and English language training. They expressed the belief that with its determination and the UK’s wholehearted support, Vietnam will be best prepared before taking over the field hospital at the UN peacekeeping mission in 2018.

Source: VNA