As of October 31, 2022, India is the second largest contributor to UN peacekeeping missions with 5,887 troops and personnel deployed across 12 missions, after Bangladesh (7,017).
India, among the largest troop-contributing countries to United Nations peacekeeping, is deploying a platoon of women peacekeepers in Abyei, the country’s largest single unit of female Blue Helmets in a UN mission since 2007.
The move heralded India's intent of increasing significantly the number of women in peacekeeping contingents.
“India is deploying an all #women’s platoon of peacekeepers as part of our battalion to the UN Mission in #Abyei @UNISFA_1. This is the single largest deployment of women #peacekeepers in recent years. Good wishes to the team!” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj tweeted on January 5, along with a photo of the contingent.
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India’s Permanent Mission to the UN said in a statement that the platoon of women peacekeepers will be deployed in Abyei as part of the Indian Battalion in the United Nations Interim Security Force, Abyei (UNISFA) on January 6, 2023.
“This will be India’s largest single unit of women Peacekeepers in a UN Mission since we deployed the first-ever all-women’s contingent in Liberia in 2007. It will also herald India’s intent of increasing significantly the number of Indian women in Peacekeeping contingents,” the statement said.
The Indian contingent, comprising two officers and 25 other ranks, will form part of an engagement platoon and specialise in community outreach and will be performing extensive security-related tasks as well. “Their presence will be especially welcome in Abyei, where a recent spurt in violence has triggered a spate of challenging humanitarian concerns for women and children in the conflict zone,” it added.