Senior UN officials, during the talks with Bangladesh Army Chief General SM Shafiuddin Ahmed in the United Nations Headquarters, expressed their interest in deploying more peacekeepers from Bangladesh in the future.
The UN's Acting Military Adviser Major General Maureen O'Brien highly praised the Bangladeshi peacekeepers' professionalism, ethics, and discipline and said that Bangladesh is at the forefront of UN peacekeeping operations for all these reasons.
He also expressed interest in recruiting more peacekeepers from Bangladesh in the future, said a press release.
Assistant Secretary-General (ASG), Department of Political and Peace Building Affairs Mohammed Khaled Khiari also lauded Bangladesh's leadership in the Peacebuilding Commission and UN Peacekeeping missions.
He also praised the government and the people of Bangladesh for its graduation from the LDC category and for providing humanitarian shelter to the forcibly displaced Rohingyas.
Both UN officials requested the Army Chief to deploy an aviation contingent to the UN peacekeeping mission as soon as possible. The Army Chief agreed to the request in principle.
During his visit to the UN Headquarters in New York on 25 and 26 April, General Shafiuddin met with Gilles Michaud, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Department of Security and Safety; Major General Maureen O'Brien, Acting Military Adviser; Mohammed Khaled Khiari, Assistant Secretary-General (ASG), Department of Political and Peace Building Affairs; Christian Saunders, ASG, Department of Operational Support and Police Adviser Luis Ribeiro Carrilho.
During the meetings, the Army Chief highlighted Bangladesh's constitutional commitment to world peace and raised issues of Bangladesh's interest in the UN peacekeeping operations, such as the recruitment of more Bangladeshi peacekeepers, including women peacekeepers in the UN peacekeeping missions, the appointment of high-level military officials in various peacekeeping operations, participation in peacekeeping missions co-pledging with other countries,
He also raised some more issues, such as the deployment of armed personnel carriers from Bangladesh in the UN peacekeeping operations, recruitment of Bangladeshi peacekeepers to the political missions and guard units, recruitment of skilled and experienced officers of the Bangladesh Army in the Security and Safety, and the Operational Support Department of UNHQs, and deployment of more Police Contingents and Individual Police Officers (IPOs).
Bangladeshi peacekeepers are selected through a rigorous selection process and sent to the mission with advanced pre-deployment training, the Army Chief mentioned.
General Shafiuddin proposed to replace the long-used weapons and equipment in the Bangladeshi contingents of the peacekeeping mission with new weapons and equipment sourced from Bangladesh, to which the concerned officials readily agreed.
It would eventually play a significant role in enhancing Bangladeshi peacekeepers' capability, security, and morale, he added.
ASG Christian Sounders also expressed interest in recruiting more Bangladeshi peacekeepers for different missions.
Police Adviser Luis Riberio Carrilho praised the Bangladeshi police personnel engaged in peacekeeping operations and expressed interest in recruiting more Bangladeshi police personnel.