Nepalese peacekeepers from MINUSTAH reinforce operations in South Sudan
Tuesday, 25 February 2014, Port-au-Prince | MINUSTAH
350 peacekeepers from the Nepalese contingent (NEPBAT), connected to MINUSTAH since July 2013, will be redeployed to South Sudan, to strengthen the capacity of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). The decision was taken by the United Nations Security Council on 24 December 2013 in resolution S/RES/2132 (2013).
Under the gradual withdrawal of MINUSTAH from Haiti, it was expected that NEPBAT would return to Nepal once its mission was completed in late December 2013. However, due to the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation in South Sudan, Nepal has proposed to send its contingent to participate in the strengthening of UNMISS capacity.
329 of the Nepalese peacekeepers have already left Haiti to join the Mission in South Sudan. 63 of them left at the end of January 2014 to coordinate the arrival of the contingent to UNMISS. Then, on 3 February, 266 more flew to Juba. The last 21 Nepalese soldiers in Haiti will join the contingent in South Sudan in late February.
The redeployment of Nepalese forces to UNMISS involves sending materials and equipment necessary for their installation and autonomy in the field. More than 250 tons of equipment were transported via three "Antonov An-24" aircraft, the largest commercial cargo aircraft in the world. These flights, connecting Port-au-Prince to Juba, were scheduled on 19 and 30 January, and on 5 February 2014. Among the materials sent were 14 containers of office equipment, computer hardware, military uniforms, weapons, food, water, 7 trucks, 14 all-terrain vehicles and even water tanks. The second part of the contingent's equipment – about 330 tons worth – will be sent by sea at the beginning of March.
In total, the Nepalese contingent will swell to 850, including 500 directly from Nepal.
Security Council resolution 2132 decided to increase the size of UNMISS temporarily "to support its protection of civilians and provision of humanitarian assistance".
Thus, UNMISS will increase its military size from 6,935 to 12,500, and its police component from 713 to 1,323, thanks to the support of United Nations Member States, and the temporary transfer of peacekeepers from MONUSCO (United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) and UNAMID (United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur). The United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA), the United Nations Operation in Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI) and the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) will also participate in the temporary deployment.