Letter to the Editor — International Day of UN Peacekeepers

Monday, May 24 2021

The Hon Darren Chester MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel

Dear Editor,

On 29 May, we pause to recognise the International Day of United Nations (UN) Peacekeepers.

Australia has been involved in UN peacekeeping missions all over the world for more than 70 years, with Australian military personnel, police and civilians having served in more than 50 multinational operations.

UN peacekeepers are often referred to as the ‘Blue Berets’, a term that evokes the light blue berets, caps, hats, or sometimes helmets, worn on operations.

Thousands of Australians have served as peacekeepers around the world, in Somalia, Rwanda, Mozambique and elsewhere in Africa, in the Middle East, in Cambodia and East Timor, and in Bougainville and the Solomon Islands.

Today, there are 23 Australians on UN Peacekeeping missions around the world, including in South Sudan, the Middle East and Mali.

Tragically, 16 have lost their lives during peacekeeping operations and we honour their memory.

We remember the courage shown by UN peacekeepers and give thanks to the thousands of military personnel, police and civilians who have helped countries in need to restore and maintain peace.

More information about peacekeeping and the operations Australians have been involved in is available at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs Anzac Portal.

Darren Chester

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs

Minister for Defence Personnel

Media contacts

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Office of the Hon Darren Chester, Canberra ACT

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