Vietnam sends 3 more officers to join UN peacekeeping missions

Vietnam has expanded its presence in United Nations peacekeeping activities with the appointment of three military officers to take on new missions in Africa

Colonel General Nguyen Phuong Nam, Deputy Chief of Staff of the People’s Army of Vietnam, presents the officers with blue berets, the symbolic headwear of UN peacekeeping forces.

The officers – Lt. Col. Le Ngoc Son, Captain Dinh Duc Long, and Captain Ho Tien Hung – will be working as intelligence analyst, military observer and training officer in their upcoming duty in the Central African Republic.

The three officers from the Vietnam Peacekeeping Center under the Ministry of National Defense received their official dispatch order on Friday from Col. Gen. Nguyen Phuong Nam, Deputy Chief of Staff of the People’s Army of Vietnam.

The selected officers would join specialized training programs to prepare them for peacekeeping operations in the African country, Col. Hoang Kim Phung, head of the Vietnam Peacekeeping Center, said in a press conference in February.

The officers have been ordered to protect civilians and peacekeeping facilities at all costs, and work in solidarity with fellow peacekeepers to accomplish their missions.

A good command of English and extensive knowledge in foreign and defense policies were among the requirements for the selected Vietnamese officers, in addition to their ability to perform well in a multinational working environment.

Since its first participation in 2014, Vietnam has dispatched 12 personnel to UN missions in South Sudan and the Central African Republic, joining activities to provide humanitarian aid and civilian protection in countries torn by natural disasters or internal conflicts.

Vietnam is also looking to send five other officers to Africa between April and June, bringing the total number of Vietnamese officers engaging in UN missions to 20.

A field hospital slated to become operational in war-torn South Sudan in early 2018 will also be staffed by a number of Vietnamese officers among personnel from other countries, Phung said.

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