60th ANNIVESARY / PEACEKEEPING BACKGROUNDER

26-May-2008 00:05:59
The United Nations this week honours sixty years of UN peacekeeping. 63 operations have been dispatched around the world since the first UN peacekeepers arrived in the Middle East in 1948. UNTV / DPKO

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STORY: 60TH ANNIVERSARY / PEACEKEEPING BACKGROUNDER
TRT: 5.59
SOURCE: ARCHIVE / UNTV / UNAMA / DPKO
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 22 MAY 2008, KABUL, AFGHANISTAN / 27 MARCH 2008, NEW YORK CITY / ARCHIVE / FILE


SHOTLIST:

ARCHIVE – MIDDLE EAST – DATE UNKNOWN

1. Various shots, UN observers in the Middle East

ARCHIVE – 1949

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Ralph Bunche, UN Mediator in the Middle East:
"These successful armistice negotiations have demonstrated conclusively the ability of the United Nations to mediate a serious conflict, and to avert a dangerous threat to the peace."

ARCHIVE – INDIA/PAKISTAN BORDER – DATE UNKNOWN

3. Still, UN observers in Kashmir
4. Still, UN observers in Kashmir

ARCHIVE – EGYPT - 1956

5. Various shots, Suez crisis

ARCHIVE – EGYPT – DATE UNKNOWN

6. Various shots, UN blue helmets in Egypt

ARCHIVE – 1956

7. SOUNDBITE (English) Dag Hammarskjöld, Secretary-General of the United Nations:
"As members of the United Nations Emergency Force you are taking part in an experience that is new in history. You are soldiers of peace, in the first international force of its kind. "

ARCHIVE – CONGO – DATE UNKNOWN

8. Med shot, UN peacekeepers laying out barbed wire
9. Med shot, UN peacekeepers in blue helmets
10. Med shot, UN peacekeepers with Congolese children

ARCHIVE – LEBANON – DATE UNKNOWN

11. Still, UN peacekeeper speaking to local man on donkey

ARCHIVE – CYPRUS – DATE UNKNOWN

12. Wide shot, UN peacekeepers walking

UNTV – 27 MARCH 2008, NEW YORK CITY

13. SOUNDBITE (English) Lakhdar Brahimi, former Special Advisor to the Secretary-General:
"I think that we all thought that once the Cold war was over then the UN would have no problem whatsoever in fixing any problem anywhere in the world. And I think we did in the beginning."

FILE – NAMIBIA - DATE UNKOWN

14. Various shots, independence celebrations

FILE – CAMBODIA – DATE UNKOWN

15. Med shot, children

FILE – MOZAMBIQUE – DATE UNKOWN

16. Med shot, decommissioned weapons

FILE – EL SALVADOR – DATE UNKOWN

17. Med shot, human rights monitor

FILE – RWANDA – DATE UNKOWN

18. Tracking shot, UN vehicle passing body on road

FILE – SOMALIA – DATE UNKOWN

19. Wide shot, truck passing under "Welcome to Mogadishu" sign

FILE – BOSNIA – DATE UNKNOWN

20. Various shots, UN peacekeepers walking through rubble

UNAMA – 22 MAY 2008, KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

21. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"The nature of conflict has changed. Sixty years ago, it was conflicts between States. Today, more and more we see conflicts within States, so peacekeeping more and more is multidimensional, it's helping States rebuild themselves. It's a challenge because you need a much broader range of capacities than the capacities you needed sixty years ago when you only had a few military observers."

FILE – KOSOVO – DATE UNKNOWN

23. Med shot, UNMIK sign
24. Wide shot, displaced people
25. Wide shot, local woman standing outside a house

FILE – EAST TIMOR, 1999

26. Various shots, voting
27. Med shot, local people reading UNTAET newsletter

UNAMA – 22 MAY 2008, KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

28. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guehenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"Peacekeeping is much more than the deployment of military forces. It is an effort of the international community to be an honest broker, to help people who have lost trust between them because of conflict, because of violence, to help them regain that trust and make compromise, make arrangements, that will be eventually the basis for a stable democratic state."

FILE - MONUC - DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO – DATE UNKNOWN

29. Various shots, peacekeepers healing wound of victim
30. Various shots, peacekeeper visiting a school in a camp and talking to students

FILE - MINUSTAH – HAITI – DATE UNKNOWN

31. Med shot, man with a hurt leg attended by female doctors
32. Med shot, woman soldier (Dr. Alejandra, Uruguay) pours water on an old man's leg

FILE – UNMIT – 29 JUNE 2007, TIMOR LESTE

33. Wide shot, helicopter landing
34. Tracking shot, UN staff unloading ballot boxes

FILE – UNMIT - 30 JUNE 2007, FAROL, DILI, TIMOR LESTE

35. Med shot, election helper holding up empty ballot box
36. Med shot, election helpers sealing ballot box

FILE - MINUSTAH – HAITI – DATE UNKNOWN

37. Various shots, woman police officer being trained on defense techniques

FILE - UNTV - MAY 2004 - LIBERIA

38. Med shot, female peacekeeper at ceremony

FILE – HAITI - DATE UNKNOWN

39. Wide shot, UN containers on ship
40. Med shot, truck driving off ship

FILE – UNMIS – 28 DECEMBER 2006, EL FASHER, SUDAN

41. Various shots, UN peacekeepers being greeted by AU soldiers

FILE – UNAMID – DARFUR, SUDAN – RECENT

42. SOUNDBITE (English) General Martin Luther Agwai, Force Commander of the UN/AU hybrid mission in Darfur (UNAMID):
"The UN have got experience in peace keeping not only now but for over half a century now

FILE – DARFUR, SUDAN – DATE UNKNOWN

43. UN jeep passing behind local children

FILE – UNAMID – DARFUR, SUDAN – RECENT

44. SOUNDBITE (English) General Martin Luther Agwai, Force Commander of the UN/AU hybrid mission in Darfur (UNAMID):
The AU has the understanding, has the sympathy of dealing with people from the same cultural background."
45. Wide shot, group of peacekeepers and local men walking away

UNAMA – 22 MAY 2008, KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

46. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"What I think is the challenge of the next few years is how to 'orchestrate' the international effort in post-conflict countries, how to be able to master the, not just the military, the police resource, but the development resources, and how to find balance between being humble enough to recognize that it is for the people you have come to help to make the key decisions, and at the same time to be strong enough to be a demanding friend."

FILE - MINUSTAH – HAITI – DATE UNKNOWN

47. Wide shot, truck of water, many people waiting
48. Med shot, two soldiers giving water at a spigot
49. Wide shot, female soldier assists woman to lift a bucket of water


STORYLINE:

Sixty years ago this week, the Security Council authorized the first-ever United Nations peacekeeping operation, the United Nations Truce Observer Organization (UNTSO) in the Middle East. A total of 63 UN peace operations have been dispatched since then.

On 29 May 1948 – the date that is today observed as the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers – the Security Council adopted resolution 50 (1948). It called for a cessation of hostilities in the first Arab-Israeli war, and for the truce to be supervised by a UN Mediator with the assistance of military observers.

The first group of UNTSO military observers arrived in the region in June 1948. In 1949, UNTSO military observers supervised the Armistice Agreements between Israel and its Arab neighbors, which were for many years the main basis of the uneasy truce in the whole area.

SOUNDBITE (English) Ralph Bunche, UN Mediator in the Middle East:
"These successful armistice negotiations have demonstrated conclusively the ability of the United Nations to mediate a serious conflict, and to avert a dangerous threat to the peace."

A similar observer group was sent to Kashmir to monitor the ceasefire between Pakistan and India in 1948.

The first peacekeeping force to wear the now famous blue helmets was the First United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF I), deployed to the Middle East in 1956 following the Suez crisis. For the first time, armed units of UN peacekeepers formed a buffer zone between warring parties.

SOUNDBITE (English) Dag Hammarskjöld, Secretary-General of the United Nations:
"As members of the United Nations Emergency Force, you are taking part in an experience that is new in history. You are soldiers of peace, in the first international force of its kind. "

Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld provided the basic principles on which the force operated – rules that remained the basis for many future operations: the parties in conflict had to be ready to accept the presence of UN peacekeepers to help them resolve their differences; a ceasefire must be in place; and peacekeepers would not use force except in self-defense.

Despite the constraints of Cold War politics, the United Nations carried out several peacekeeping missions with these principles as a guide, including large operations in Lebanon, in the Congo, and in Cyprus.

The end of the Cold War ushered in an era of unprecedented expansion in UN peacekeeping.

SOUNDBITE (English) Lakhdar Brahimi, former Special Advisor to the Secretary-General:
"I think that we all thought that once the Cold war was over then the UN would have no problem whatsoever in fixing any problem anywhere in the world. And I think we did in the beginning."

UN field operations also evolved from "traditional" missions involving strictly military tasks, to complex "multidimensional" enterprises designed to ensure the implementation of comprehensive peace agreements and assist in laying the foundations for sustainable peace.

In Namibia and in Cambodia – but also in Mozambique and in El Salvador -- UN interventions brought positive outcomes.

But the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, the genocide in Rwanda, the difficulties in Somalia and elsewhere brought some very clear lessons home for peacekeeping.

By the turn of the century, the so-called 'Brahimi report' launched a process of reform of UN peacekeeping that aimed to build on the lessons of the past and adapt to the shifting nature of conflicts away from "traditional" inter-State warfare.

SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"The nature of conflict has changed. Sixty years ago, it was conflicts between States. Today, more and more we see conflicts within States, so peacekeeping more and more is multidimensional, it's helping States rebuild themselves. It's a challenge because you need a much broader range of capacities than the capacities you needed sixty years ago when you only had a few military observers."

In Kosovo and Timor Leste, UN peacekeeping was called upon to re-build and help govern territories in the wake of civil conflicts.

SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"Peacekeeping is much more than the deployment of military forces. It is an effort of the international community to be an honest broker, to help people who have lost trust between them because of conflict, because of violence, to help them regain that trust and make compromise, make arrangements, that will be eventually the basis for a stable democratic state."

Today's "multi-dimensional" operations link peacekeeping to other areas of UN action like humanitarian aid, the monitoring of human rights, and disarmament.

UN peacekeepers are in many cases participating in building national institutions and strengthening the rule of law. They train the police, support the judicial system, and assist with democratic elections.

Women are playing a growing role in UN peacekeeping.

A complex support system has developed to handle the logistics of deploying today's large-scale operations to places that sometimes lack all pre-existing infrastructure.

Another milestone in the history of UN peacekeeping was reached last year, with the authorization of the joint AU/UN hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAMID). It is the first cooperation of its kind between the United Nations and a regional organization.

SOUNDBITE (English) General Martin Luther Agwai, Force Commander of the UN/AU hybrid mission in Darfur (UNAMID):
"The UN have got experience in peace keeping not only now but for over half a century now // The regional body like the AU has the understanding, has the sympathy of dealing with people from the same cultural background."

Looking ahead during an interview on his recent trip to Afghanistan, outgoing Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Marie Guéhenno said that UN peacekeeping will continue to change.

SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations:
"What I think is the challenge of the next few years is how to 'orchestrate' the international effort in post-conflict countries, how to be able to master the, not just the military, the police resource, but the development resources, and how to find balance between being humble enough to recognize that it is for the people you have come to help to make the key decisions, and at the same time to be strong enough to be a demanding friend."

More than 110,000 personnel from nearly 120 countries currently serve in 17 UN peace missions, on a budget of less than half of one percent of the world's military spending.
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