In all fields of peacekeeping, women peacekeepers have proven that they can perform the same roles, to the same standards and under the same difficult conditions, as their male counterparts. It is an operational imperative that we recruit and retain female peacekeepers. In 1993, women made up 1% of deployed uniformed personnel. In 2019, out of approximately 95,000 peacekeepers, women constitute 4.7% of military contingents and 10.8% of formed police units in UN Peacekeeping missions. More women in peacekeeping means more effective peacekeeping.
UN Peacekeepers are facing one of their greatest challenges yet - the COVID-19 pandemic. Peacekeepers are assisting governments and local communities in the response to the pandemic and continuing to adapt their activities to execute their mandates, including protecting vulnerable communities.
Women peacekeepers are on the front lines in this fight and are an integral part of the COVID-19 response, as well as in implementing mission mandates, within current constraints and while taking all precautionary measures.
International days and weeks are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. We also mark other UN observances.