Seventeen Indian peacekeepers deployed with the UN mission in South Sudan have been awarded medals in recognition of their service to the people in the world’s youngest country.
The Indian police officers have served the UN and the people of South Sudan for almost a year. Their duties included protecting displaced civilians, community policing and building local police skills.
The UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS tweeted on Tuesday, “17 Indian peacekeepers have today been awarded @UN medals in recognition of their @UNPeacekeeping service to the people of #SouthSudan as UN Police officers.”
In a moment of pride, the 17 Indian men and women police officers were awarded the UN service medals during a special ceremony at the UN House in Juba.
“We are all here in this country to see peace and stability,” India’s Ambassador to South Sudan S D Moorthy said during the ceremony, according to a video posted by the UNMISS.
The UNMISS head David Shearer congratulated the Indian police officers for being awarded the medals and lauded the “long tradition” of Indian peacekeeping.
India is among the largest troop contributing countries in the world to UN peacekeeping missions. As of March 2019, India is the second highest troop contributor to the UNMISS, with 2,337 troops deployed with the mission. In addition, India contributes 22 police personnel to the UNMISS.
Decorated Indian Army officer Lieutenant General Shailesh Sadashiv Tinaikar in July took charge as the Force Commander of the UN mission in war-ravaged South Sudan, leading about 15,000 troops.