Ukraine Recalls Troops from UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa

A UN official said Ukraine would repatriate troops and equipment involved in UN peacekeeping missions in Africa and Europe in response to Russia’s invasion.

More than 2 million people have been forced to flee since Russian troops invaded Ukraine nearly two weeks ago, shelling, bombing and besieging its cities and towns.

President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday ordered the recall of all peacekeeping forces in order to assist in the war effort at home, Ukrainian media reported.

There are about 300 Ukrainian troops, police officers, and staff in six UN missions, a number unlikely to drastically alter peacekeeping activities around the world.

Ukraine’s biggest contribution to MONUSCO, the mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, consists of eight helicopters and a 250-member aviation unit, a MONUSCO spokesman said.

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There are also about a dozen or fewer police officers and other staff from Ukraine serving in U.N. operations in Mali, South Sudan, Sudan, Cyprus and Kosovo, the United Nations website reports.

Ukraine’s military power remains dwarfed by those of its giant neighbour, despite the fact that thousands of civilians and foreign volunteers have volunteered to fight, and Western nations have donated equipment.

There are about 12,000 MONUSCO troops deployed in Congo’s mineral-rich east, where dozens of militia groups are fighting for control of land and resources.

MONUSCO reported that Ukrainian helicopters are based in the eastern towns of Goma, Bunia, Bukavu and Beni.

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The offensive in Ukraine is described by Russia as a “special operation” aimed at ‘demilitarizing’ and ‘denazifying’ Ukraine.


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