Ireland has contributed 68,000 individual "tours of duty" to UN peacekeeping missions

Some 500 Defence Forces personnel are currently serving abroad

Ireland has contributed 68,000 individual "tours of duty" to UN peacekeeping missions

File photo of Lieutenant Tim Cunningham boarding a Swedish Air Force C130 Hercules at Uppsala, Sweden | Image: Forces

Minister with Responsibility for Defence, Paul Kehoe, attended the United Nations Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial in London earlier today

The event is a follow-on from the Leaders’ Summit on Peacekeeping held in New York on 28th September in 2015.

Today’s event focused on the commitment of resources to UN peacekeeping, the development of a coherent shared plan for how peacekeeping can play its part in implementing the Women Peace and Security agenda and a number of key challenges facing UN military deployments. 

Speaking at the event, the Minister said: “I believe this summit provides a timely opportunity to consider the evolution of UN peacekeeping as we face new and more complex security and peacekeeping challenges across the globe."

"A central tenet of Irish foreign policy is support for the multilateral system of collective security represented by the United Nations. Ireland is committed to ensuring the continued effectiveness of UN operations and, in this regard, will increase its contribution to UN Missions with the deployment of an additional 150 personnel to UNIFIL, the UN Mission in Lebanon, later this year,” he added.

The Defence Forces Chief of Staff, Vice Admiral Mark Mellett DSM also attended the event. 

Ireland has an unbroken, long and highly regarded history of participation in overseas missions mandated by the United Nations since 1958, which has comprised approximately 68,000 individual tours of duty.  

Currently, some 500 Defence Forces personnel are serving overseas.