Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds has commemorated the International Day of Peace by reaffirming the Australian Defence Force’s ongoing commitment to participating in peacekeeping efforts across the region.
Drawing from this year’s theme, 'Shaping Peace Together', Minister Reynolds said Australia remains committed to upholding values of global cooperation, fostered by international bodies like the United Nations.
“As we celebrate 75 years since the establishment of the United Nations, I recognise the ADF’s proud history in UN Peacekeeping, and our ongoing efforts to build and restore peace,” Minister Reynolds said.
“Australians have served proudly in peacekeeping missions since 1947 including by supporting peace operations in Cambodia, Bougainville, Timor Leste and Solomon Islands.
“Australia continues to build on this legacy through our peacekeeping partnerships across the Indo-Pacific.”
The nation’s peacekeeping efforts have included participation in the biennial Australia-Thailand Exercise PIRAP JABIRU, co-operation with the UN and international partners to provide airlift for peacekeeper contingents, and moves to strengthen information sharing among regional peacekeeping centres.
The ADF has also deployed personnel for peacekeeping operations, supported investigations into sexual exploitation and abuse, and has appointed Major General Cheryl Pearce as the Force Commander to the UN peacekeeping mission in Cyprus.
“At this critical time when the list of challenges to peace is growing, we continue to work alongside the UN toward international peace and security,” Minister Reynolds added.
“This includes strengthening UN peacekeeping performance and overcoming barriers to women’s participation in peace operations.”