Peruvian Blue Helmets on Peace Mission
By Peruvian Ministry of Defense January 17, 2017On January 3rd, Peruvian Minister of Defense Jorge Nieto Montesinos, officiated the farewell ceremony for the Peruvian “Blue Helmets,” members of the Second Contingent of the Peru Company of Engineers, who traveled to the Central African Republic on January 10th to take part in a United Nations peacekeeping mission. “You are soldiers for peace and you have the honor and the responsibility to maintain the high level of professionalism and ethical behavior of our Armed Forces in these peace missions,” he told the 205 commissioned military troops from the three service branches. The Peru Company of Engineers is part of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA). The group is tasked with building and maintaining airfields in the country, supporting the installation and implementation of bases belonging to other peacekeeping operations contingents, and other engineering work. This is the second Peruvian contingent traveling to the African nation on a one-year mission. The first contingent arrived in Africa in December 2015 and will return to Peru in the upcoming days, after satisfactorily completing the work assigned to them by the United Nations. Notable among the projects completed by the Peruvian contingent in 2016 are the construction of prefabricated offices in the city of Bouar, site of the MINUSCA headquarters, the expansion of the Peruvian contingent’s camp perimeter, the rehabilitation and construction of MINUSCA’s shooting range, the repair of the entrance of the MINUSCA headquarters, and reconnaissance of the Bossangoa airfield for maintenance and repair work of the landing strip, among others. “In general, the participation of our Armed Forces in peacekeeping missions has been outstanding for more than 30 years, so much so that some partners in the United Nations, as well as from the ministries of defense of neighboring countries have told me their satisfaction at having worked with our soldiers,” Minister Nieto said. The second contingent of the Peru Company of Engineers consists of 121 Army troops, 58 Navy troops, and 26 Air Force troops. Their commander is Peruvian Army Colonel Carlos Overluijs García. The farewell ceremony was attended by Deputy Minister for Defense Policy Librado Orozco; the Armed Forces Joint Command Chief Admiral José Paredes Lora, as well as the general commanders of the Air Force, Air General Javier Ramírez Guillén, Navy Commander, Admiral Gonzalo Ríos Polastri; and Commander General of the Army Luis Ramos Hume.