May 29, 2021 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada
The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Foreign Affairs; the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence; and the Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, issued the following statement:
“Today, we pay tribute to past and present United Nations peacekeepers who put themselves at risk in the service of peace around the world.
“We honour our Canadian military, police and civilian personnel deployed in South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Mali, Cyprus and the Middle East, and the tens of thousands of peacekeepers from more than 120 UN Member States working to restore peace, bring stability and protect civilian populations around the world. Their professionalism, dedication and courage, including on the COVID-19 frontlines in the countries where they serve, are an inspiration to us all.
“We also pay particular tribute to women peacekeepers everywhere. We know that the meaningful participation of women in all aspects of peacekeeping is essential. When they do so, the probability of success of any mission increases. Canada will continue to work with our partners and allies to continue to increase the meaningful participation of women in UN peacekeeping through the Elsie Initiative for Women in Peace Operations and Canada’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security.
“This year’s International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers puts a special focus on the contributions of young people to lasting peace and security. We salute young peacekeepers, between the ages of 18 and 29, for the critical role they play in UN peace operations. Canada proudly supports the Youth, Peace and Security agenda.
“In 2021, the majority of peacekeeping missions operate in the midst of ongoing and complex armed conflicts. Thousands of peacekeepers – including 123 Canadians – have lost their lives in the more than 70 years since Canada helped to establish UN peacekeeping. Let us remember them on this day and always, and continue to work towards a more just and peaceful world.”