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International Day of UN Peacekeepers 29 May
2016 Theme: “Honouring Our Heroes”

ROMA (Italy) - "On this International Day of International Day of UN Peacekeepers, we honour our heroes – the more than one million men and women who have served under the UN flag with pride, distinction and courage since the first deployment in 1948. And we pay our highest tribute to the more than 3,400 peacekeepers who have lost their lives while in service during that period." — UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon

The theme for the 2016 International Day of UN Peacekeepers is “Honouring our Heroes.” The Day offers a chance to pay tribute to the Blue Helmets’ invaluable contribution to the work of the Organization and to honour more than 3,400 peacekeepers who have lost their lives serving under the UN flag since 1948, including 129 last year.

Today, more than 124,000 military, police and civilian personnel are deployed in 16 peacekeeping operations on four continents. In a message to mark the Day, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: “They manifest the best attributes of global solidarity, courageously serving in dangerous environments to provide security to some of the world’s most vulnerable.”

Since its beginning in 1948, United Nations peacekeeping has evolved into one of the main tools used by the international community to manage complex crises that threaten international peace and security. In this period a total of 71 peacekeeping operations have been established. More than one million military, police and civilian personnel have served as UN peacekeepers.


Over the past year, UN peacekeeping has faced many challenges. It has proven to be dynamic and flexible in its approach which has resulted in protecting populations at risk and advancing peace processes.

In South Sudan, more than 200,000 civilians, who feared for their lives, sought shelter at UN bases. In the Central African Republic, peacekeepers successfully supported landmark presidential and legislative elections that have set the once deeply troubled country on a path to peace and stability. In Mali, our “Blue Helmets” have suffered grave losses that have not deterred them from implementing their mandate. In many countries, peacekeepers have addressed the problems of landmines and explosive remnants of war.

Currently, UN peacekeeping operations receive contributions of military and police personnel from 123 Member States. This impressive number reflects strong global confidence in the value of UN peacekeeping.

While the official International Day of United Nations Peacekeeper’s Day is on 29 May, UN Headquarters in New York will celebrate on 19 May. The Secretary-General will preside over a wreath-laying ceremony in honour of all peacekeepers who have lost their lives while serving under the UN flag. In addition, the Dag Hammarskjöld Medal will be awarded posthumously to the peacekeepers who fell while serving in the cause of peace, during 2015. And the Secretary-General will preside over the inaugural ceremony for the 'Captain Mbaye Diagne Medal for Exceptional Courage.’ (UN Photo - Credit: Italia News)

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La giornata internazionale dei Peacekeeper 2016 celebrata a Brindisi dalla base UNGSC
L'evento "Believe in Peace" al Teatro Verdi del capoluogo venerdì 27 maggio

ROMA (Italy) - La Base ONU di Brindisi, in collaborazione con gli istituti superiori, celebra la Giornata Internazionale dei Peacekeeper ONU 2016, il 27 maggio alle ore 10.00, presso il Nuovo Teatro Verdi di Brindisi.

Durante l’evento, la Base ONU, in riconoscimento del ruolo di testimonial del territorio, sarà insignita del premio “Rotary Valesio Prize” che, dal 2002, il Rotary Club Valesio (Distretto 2120 Puglia e Basilicata) assegna ogni 2 anni ad enti e/o organizzazioni nazionali e internazionali meritevoli nel settore sociale, artistico o culturale.


Gli studenti nell’ambito della cerimonia esibiranno, attraverso minifilmati, un’opera pittorica, un plastico ed un brano musicale, la loro interpretazione di cosa sia il Peacekeeping. Tutte le opere artistiche prodotte per l’evento saranno valutate in tempo reale da una giuria di esperti, in base ai criteri di: creatività, aderenza al tema, dimensione emotiva, abilità tecnica e comunicazione. La cerimonia si concluderà con la premiazione della scuola vincitrice del concorso “BeLIeVE in PEACE”.

L’evento è patrocinato dal Ministero degli Affari Esteri, dal Ministero dell’Istruzione, dalla Regione Puglia, dal Comune e dalla Provincia di Brindisi, nonché dal Centro d’Informazione Regionale delle Nazioni Unite e dal Rotary Club Valesio.


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Peacekeeping ‘flagship of the UN enterprise,’ Ban says ahead of Day honouring 'blue helmets'
The Secretary-General also laid a wreath to honour all fallen peacekeepers, noting that nearly
3,500 peacekeepers have died since 1948

ROMA (Italy) - While the official Day is on 29 May, UN Headquarters in New York is celebrating today, under the theme Honouring Our Heroes. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today led an inaugural ceremony to award the “Captain Mbaye Diagne Medal for Exceptional Courage” as New York Headquarters observed the International Day of UN Peacekeepers.

The UN chief presented the first such medal to the family of the late Captain Diagne, who saved hundreds of lives in 1994 while serving as a peacekeeper in Rwanda before succumbing to fatal injury incurred while on duty.


Fifteen years ago, the Organization had fewer than 40,000 military and police personnel. Today, more than 105,000 uniformed personnel from 124 troop- and police-contributing countries serve under the blue flag, alongside 18,000 international and civilian staff and UN volunteers.

During that ceremony, Mr. Ban noted that the medal helps to ensure that Captain Diagne and those who follow in his footsteps will always be remembered by the UN and the people worldwide. “This medal is for military, police or civilian UN personnel and associated personnel who follow in the tradition of Captain Diagne. They must demonstrate exceptional courage in the face of extreme danger while fulfilling their mandate in the service of humanity and the United Nations,” the UN chief said.

In a separate ceremony, the Secretary-General also laid a wreath to honour all fallen peacekeepers, noting that nearly 3,500 peacekeepers have died since 1948. “Peacekeeping is becoming more and more dangerous,” Mr. Ban said in remarks during that event. “All too often our personnel are targeted by armed groups, spoilers and terrorists. In some areas where the UN operates, our blue flag has gone from being a shield to a target.” The UN chief emphasized that in just one day – this past 12 February – terrorists attacked the UN base in Kidal, Mali. When the firing stopped, seven UN soldiers were dead and 30 more were injured. Just yesterday in Mali, he continued, five more peacekeepers were killed and a number of others injured. “These outrageous crimes will never stop us from pursuing peace in Mali – or anywhere,” he stressed.

Mr. Ban also presided over a ceremony during which the Dag Hammarskjöld Medal was awarded posthumously to 129 military, police and civilian personnel who lost their lives while serving in peacekeeping operations during 2015. “The United Nations staff are often called a family,” he said during that event. “We share that sense of belonging and the collective will to act.” Mr. Ban highlighted that much like former Secretary-General Hammarskjöld, those being honoured today were inspiring men and women. “They were not supporting peace in the abstract – they were in the arena. They lost their lives doing critical work in some of the most dangerous and difficult places on earth,” the UN chief said. “Peacekeeping remains the flagship of the United Nations enterprise,” he added. (UN Photo - Credit: Italia News)


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International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers
29 May, events around the world will be shared through the tag #Together4Peace

ROMA (Italy) - On 29 May, UN offices, alongside Member States and non-governmental organizations, hold events to honour fallen peacekeepers. Since the first UN peacekeeping mission was established in 1948 until April 2016, 3,400 military, police and civilian personnel have lost their lives in the service of peace as a result of acts of violence, accidents and disease. The day was established to: Honour the memory of the UN peacekeepers who have lost their lives in the cause of peace; Pay tribute to all the men and women who have served and continue to serve in UN peacekeeping operations for their high level of professionalism, dedication and courage.


For more than 70 years, UN Peacekeeping has proven to be a legitimate, reliable and effective tool in facilitating the transition from conflict to peace. Fifteen years ago, the UN had fewer than 40,000 Military and police personnel. Today, more than 105,000 uniformed personnel from 124 troop- and police-contributing countries serve under the UN flag, along with 18,000 international and national civilian staff and UN Volunteers. They courageously risk their lives in order to bring stability to some of the world’s most vulnerable populations.

As the size, complexity and accomplishments of peacekeeping have grown, unfortunately so have the risks as the ‘Blue Helmets’ are increasingly and directly targeted. Last year, the list of fallen numbered 129. These selfless peacekeepers came from 46 countries, and hailed from the ranks of military, police, international civil servants, UN Volunteers and national staff. They all had vastly different backgrounds, but all shared heroism and the belief that UN peacekeeping is, and must, remain a global force for good.

We “Honour our Heroes” – the more than one million women and men who have served under the ‘blue flag’ with pride, distinction and courage ever since the first UN peacekeeping mission was deployed in 1948.

Events around the world - While the official International Day of United Nations Peacekeeper’s Day is on 29 May, UN Headquarters in New York will celebrate on 19 May. The Secretary-General will preside over a wreath-laying ceremony in honour of all peacekeepers who have lost their lives while serving under the UN flag.

In addition, the Dag Hammarskjöld Medal will be awarded posthumously to the peacekeepers who have fallen while serving in the cause of peace, during the preceding year.UN peacekeeping operations mark the Day by strengthening bonds with the local populations that they have been deployed to serve. For example, by holding sporting events, school and orphanage visits, art and essay competitions, photo exhibits, neighbourhood clean ups, tree plantings, concerts, and conferences and workshops on peace issues. Events around the world will be shared through the tag #Together4Peace. (UN Photo - Credit: Italia News)

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