NATION

Fijian Loyalty Assured For UN Peacekeeping Missions

Minister for Defence, National Security and Immigration Timoci Natuva has assured the continued loyalty of Fijian personnel serving under the United Nations. Mr Natuva gave this assurance when he met
18 Jul 2015 13:20
Fijian Loyalty Assured For UN Peacekeeping Missions
From left: Deputy UN Police Advisor Commissioner Shoaib Dastgir, Colonel Manoa Gadai, Minister for Defence, National Security and Immigration Timoci Natuva, ASG Dmitry Titov of the Police Division, and Commissioner of Police Ben Groenewald.

Minister for Defence, National Security and Immigration Timoci Natuva has assured the continued loyalty of Fijian personnel serving under the United Nations.

Mr Natuva gave this assurance when he met senior UN officials in New York on Wednesday.

The officials included the assistant Secretary General for the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, Edmund Mulet, ASG Dmitry Titov of the Police Division and the Deputy UN Police Advisor Commissioner Shoaib Dastgir.

It was the first time Mr Natuva met with senior UN officials after the 45 Republic of Fiji Military Forces soldiers were held hostage in the Golan Heights by a Syrian militant group, Nusra Front in August last year.

A statement from the Ministry of Defence said: “Issues discussed were on the assurances of the loyalty of the RFMF and Police on the deployments under the UN banner to various Missions that Fiji is currently participating in.

“Lessons learnt was another issue discussed specifically towards the incident that occurred in the Golan Heights and the remedies that the RFMF have conducted to avoid the repeat of such incidents.”

Land Force Commander Colonel Sitiveni Qiliho, who is also part of the tour, said what transpired in the Golan Heights proved the discipline of Fijian soldiers.

“The soldiers were loyal to the Force Commander who directed them not to fight and to give in, to put down their weapons and negotiate – that’s their loyalty to the head of mission,” he said.

He said the UN officials were thankful for the reassurance and the loyalty displayed during those trying times.

The statement added that future prospects of Fiji’s current participation situation and the understanding of the review of the UN structure on deployment was discussed.

This is expected to be an advantage to Fiji in terms of the safety of our military and Police personnel.

Commissioner of Police Ben Groenewald is also part of the tour.

Colonel Manoa Gadai, the Military Police Advisor at Fiji’s Permanent Representative Mission to the UN, assisted the delegation.

Feedback: rosi.doviverata@fijisun.com.fj

 

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