UN holds training course to promote idea of more Frenchspeaking peacekeepers

Last week in Accra, Ghana, the UN conducted a training course – the first of its kind – for 30 policy-makers and officials from 14 nations across Africa as part of a scheme to enhance the continent’s involvement in peacekeeping missions. The seminar, which targeted senior police officers, also aimed to recruit more Francophone staff.Demand for French speakers is currently much greater than supply, Ajay Bhatnagar, a training and development officer with the Civilian Police Division of the UN’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), told the UN News Service.The Security Council has just approved a UN peacekeeping mission in Côte d’Ivoire, while the existing mission in the DRC – known by the acronym MONUC – is being expanded, and a new mission is expected to be set up in troubled Haiti.UN spokesman Fred Eckhard said yesterday that three-quarters of the participants in the course – held at the recently opened Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre – were bilingual or Francophone. read more

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