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Fijian Peacekeeper Receives Posthumous Medal from UN

Fijian Peacekeeper Receives Posthumous Medal from UN
Front third from left: Secretary-General Antonio Gueterres, Fiji’s Ambassador to the United Nations Satyendra Prasad and Colonel Manoa Gadai, the Military and Police Adviser at the medal ceremony. Photo: DEPTFO News
June 03
12:21 2018

Fiji’s Ambassador to the Unit­ed Nations, Satyendra Pras­ad, received the Dag Ham­marskjold medal on behalf of the family of the late Warrant Officer Class One Niko Komaiasa Ralagi.

WO1 Ralagi was a Fijian UN Peacekeeper who died while serv­ing at the UN Disengagement Ob­server Force (UNDOF) in Syria last year.

The medal was presented by the UN Secretary-General Antonio Gueterres, to recognise the sacri­fice of the late WO1 Ralagi, who had a very distinguished career with the RFMF and had served in various UN Peacekeeping Mis­sions.

Before his untimely death in UN­DOF, WO1 Ralagi was a Senior Operations Warrant Officer at the RFMF Operations Cell at the Land Force Command Headquarters.

A decorated Fijian soldier who had served in several UN Peace­keeping Missions, he was also the recipient of the General Service Medal, MFO Peacekeeping Med­al, UNIFIL Peacekeeping Medal, UNAMI Peacekeeping Medal, UN­MISET Peacekeeping Medal, UN­DOF Peacekeeping Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal.

The late WO1 Ralagi is survived by his wife, Salanieta Lesumaim­aumi Ralagi and five children.

In a global environment where peace becomes a highly valuable goal because of the multilayered and complex security challenges, the medal ceremony carries great significance and symbolism for the United Nations in paying tribute to UN Peacekeepers who make the ultimate sacrifice in the pursuit of international peace and security.

Over the years, UN Peacekeeping operations have resulted in more than 3000 deaths in the various Peacekeeping Missions globally. The medal ceremony is part of the UN International Peacekeeping Day celebrated in New York each year.

This year, the United Nations is also celebrating its 70th year of Peacekeeping. It coincides with Fiji’s celebration of its 40 years of contribution to UN Peacekeeping globally.

At the ceremony

The event in New York began with a wreath laying ceremony followed by UN Secretary-General’s presen­tation of the Dag Hammarskjöld Medals to Troop and Police Con­tributing Countries to recognize and honour UN peacekeepers who lost their lives in the service of peace over the past 12 months. It re­mains an important annual event in the UN calendar that provides an opportunity to remember the families of all Peacekeepers who have not returned home.

During his remarks, the UN Sec­retary-General thanked all Troop and Police Contributing Countries for their sacrifice and dedication to international peace, security and prosperity.

It was a moving ceremony that was attended by more than 50 countries who provide the United Nations with Peacekeepers.

Ambassador Prasad was accom­panied to the medal ceremony by Colonel Manoa Gadai, Military and Police Adviser at the Fiji Mis­sion in New York.

Source: DEPTFO News

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