The senior United Nations envoy to Liberia has welcomed the contribution of an all-female formed police unit serving with the world body's peacekeeping operation there, emphasizing the special contributions women can make to maintaining stability in the country.
“We know from police experience around the world that women officers are good at handling potentially violent situations,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's Special Representative, Alan Doss, told officers of the unit during a visit to their headquarters in Congo Town, near Monrovia, on Thursday.
“We have to be ready for incidents of public disorder, which is not surprising in a country emerging for a long and violent civil war,” he acknowledged, adding that UNMIL aims to manage public order without resorting each time to a military response.
“I am quite confident that with your help we can maintain a peaceful, stable and violence-free environment in Liberia,” Mr. Doss told the unit made up 105 female officers with 20 male supporting staff – the first largely female Formed Police Unit to be deployed to a UN peacekeeping operation.
Mr. Doss said that UNMIL wants to help Liberia build the capacity of the country's National Police so that the Government can effectively deal with problems of public order without unnecessary violence or bringing the military on to the streets.