A UN peacekeeping official lauded Chinese peacekeepers’ “very strong commitment and discipline” at a reception to celebrate the 85th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
“In terms of competency and capacity … Chinese peacekeepers receive good training, which is important for what peacekeepers are able to do in peacekeeping missions,” Brigadier General Jean Baillaud, chief of staff of the Office of Military Affairs at the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations, said Thursday.
“They show very strong commitment and also very strong discipline,” Baillaud said at the New York residence of the Permanent Mission of China to the UN.
He said Chinese peacekeeping missions were important in quantity and quality. As an example, Baillaud recalled he was impressed by the quick deployment of Chinese military observers in the Syrian capital, Damascus, several months ago for the establishment of a supervision mission.
Chinese peacekeepers were regarded by the local population as “an asset” because they provided support in engineering, building roads, providing medical services and transport, which were vital for these missions, he said.
“The Chinese army regards maintaining world peace and promoting common development as its essential mission,” Major General Zhang Jianguo, head of the Chinese delegation to the UN Military Staff Committee, said at the reception held by the delegation.
“There are now nearly 2,000 Chinese peacekeepers carrying out their tasks in 12 peacekeeping missions,” Zhang said.
At present, China had developed military contacts with more than 150 countries, and more than 400 Chinese and foreign military delegations exchange visits every year, Zhang told some 300 guests present.
China had also established defense and security dialogue mechanisms with more than 20 countries, he said.
During the past two decades, China participated in more than 20 UN peacekeeping missions, dispatching a total of 20,000 troops and military observers.