KIGALI - The visiting United Nations Police Commissioner General, Ann-Marie Orler, has urged government to consider contributing more police personnel to the global organisation’s peacekeeping missions.
Speaking to the press, after her meeting with the top leadership of the National Police yesterday, Orler revealed that she would like to see more Rwandan policemen and policewomen in the United Nations Police (UNPOL).
Orler, who is on a five-day visit, is based at the United Nations’ Department of Peace Keeping Operations (DPKO) in New York. She is accompanied by another UN Police official, Alexandre Rinaudo.
“My purpose here is to thank the Rwandan government for contributing to peace keeping operations and we would like to have more Rwandan police officers in peace keeping operations,” Orler noted.
She announced last year that the DPKO Police Division had launched a drive to recruit more female police officers, targeting an increase in the number of women from 8 percent (in 2009) to 20 percent in 2014, with a long-term goal of having a 50-50 ratio of men to women.
There are currently around 13,000 policemen and women, from over 100 countries, serving in about 17 UN missions, compared to 2,400 a decade ago.
Police spokesman, Supt. Eric Kayiranga, says that since 2005, Rwanda has contributed 362 police peacekeepers.
“They (DPKO) now would like us to increase the numbers, especially female officers. It has been agreed that some 150 (women officers) who are currently being prepared will be sent,” Kayiranga said.
He added that over 150 Rwandan police peacekeepers are currently serving in six DPKO field missions worldwide.
They include the AU-UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) , UN Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS) , UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), UN Mission in the Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT), UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) and the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL).