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Fallen Ghanaian peacekeeper to be honoured by UN

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Ban ki-Moon
Ban ki-Moon

The late Godfred Agyemang, a Ghanaian peacekeeper who lost his life on duty in Liberia, will be among the fallen heroes to be honoured posthumously by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on International Day of UN Peacekeepers – May 19.

Godfred Agyemang who will be honoured posthumously with the Dag Hammarskjöld Medal, lost his life on November 27, 2015, while serving with the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), and was one of 128 military, police and civilian peacekeeping personnel who made the ultimate sacrifice in peacekeeping operations during 2015.

A statement by the United Nations said that Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will lay a wreath to honour the fallen “blue helmets” and preside over the ceremony to award them the medals.

According to the United Nations, Ghana is the tenth largest contributor of military and police personnel to the United Nations, with 2,886 now serving in 13 UN peace operations.

In a message to mark the Day, the Secretary-General said: “On this Day we honour our heroes – the more than one million men and women who have served under the United Nations flag with pride, distinction and courage since the first deployment in 1948. And we pay our highest tribute to the more than 3,400 peacekeepers who have lost their lives while in service during that period.”

Today, the UN says more than 105,000 uniformed personnel from 124 troop and police-contributing countries serve in peacekeeping, under its blue flag, along with 18,000 international and national civilian staff and UN volunteers.

In addition to maintaining peace and security, the world organization says peacekeepers are increasingly charged with assisting in political processes, reforming judicial systems, training law enforcement and police forces, disarming and reintegrating former combatants, and supporting the return of internally displaced persons and refugees.

Hervé Ladsous, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, was quoted as saying:  “Over 120,000 men and women – military, police and civilians – today serve in 16 missions worldwide. Our peacekeepers are deployed in some of the world’s most dangerous and austere environments. Too many of them have paid the ultimate price while serving under the blue flag in the name of peace. Today, we pay tribute to their memory by rededicating ourselves to the ideals for which they have sacrificed so much.”

By Emmanuel Odonkor

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