First rapid re­sponse po­lice unit ‘fit’, UN says

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICAS - ByWANG XI­AODONG in Lang­fang, He­bei wangx­i­aodong@chi­nadaily.com.cn

The world’s first standby, rapid de­ploy­ment po­lice unit for United Na­tions peace­keep­ing mis­sions passed UN tests on Wed­nes­day, paving the way for par­tic­i­pa­tion in fu­ture mis­sions.

“To­day, al­to­gether we have wit­nessed an ex­cel­lent per­for­mance, a pro­fes­sion­ally formed po­lice unit,” said Ata Yeni­gun, chief for se­lec­tion and re­cruit­ment at the UN’s Depart­ment of Peace­keep­ing Oper­a­tions and the test eval­u­a­tor. “We have seen mo­ti­vated per­son­nel, a fit and healthy staff.”

The tests, which were held at the China Peace­keep­ing Po­lice Train­ing Cen­ter in Lang­fang, He­bei prov­ince, had five parts — in­clud­ing team tac­tics, VIP es­cort, ve­hi­cle check and crowd con­trol — and all 160 mem­bers of the unit passed with merit, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment by the Min­istry of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity.

The unit, es­tab­lished by the min­istry, was a re­sponse to Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s com­mit­ment dur­ing the UN Peace­keep­ing Sum­mit in Septem­ber last year that China would join the new UN peace­keep­ing ca­pac­ity readi­ness sys­tem and take the lead

in set­ting up a standby po­lice unit, the min­istry said.

Xi also an­nounced dur­ing the Peace­keep­ing Sum­mit that China would build an 8,000-strong standby troop force for UN peace­keep­ing mis­sions.

The new sys­tem dif­fers from tra­di­tional peace­keep­ing forces in that they are more rapidly de­ployed and more mo­bile, ac­cord­ing to Yeni­gun.

The standby po­lice unit of the Min­istry of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity is ex­pected to be de­ployed for mis­sions within 60 days when re­quested — a much shorter time than tra­di­tional peace­keep­ing forces, he said.

“China is so far the only coun­try that has pledged a unit that can be de­ployed within 60 days,” Yeni­gun said. “It puts China as the No 1 po­lice con­tribut­ing coun­try among all Se­cu­rity Coun­cil mem­bers.”

Mem­bers of the unit were se­lected from border con­trol forces across China, and more than 50 of them have peace­keep­ing ex­pe­ri­ence in such coun­tries as Haiti and South Su­dan, ac­cord­ing to the min­istry.

The mem­bers have taken cour­ses such as lan­guage train­ing, UN-based knowl­edge and tac­ti­cal skills since pre­de­ploy­ment train­ing be­gan in June, the min­istry said.

Lyu Yanchen, 26, a pla­toon com­man­der of the unit, said he vol­un­teered for the se­lec­tion in March and passed three rounds of strict tests, in­clud­ing an English lan­guage test and one for lead­er­ship abil­ity, be­fore be­ing re­cruited to the unit.

Lyu, from the border con­trol force in South­west China’s Yun­nan prov­ince, said he took part in cargo es­cort and crowd con­trol ex­er­cises dur­ing the per­for­mance on Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

“Right now we are wait­ing and will con­tinue to get trained, so in the fu­ture we can quickly take mis­sions if or­dered.”

Yeni­gun said an­other team from the UN will in­spect the unit’s equip­ment in Oc­to­ber. Af­ter as­sess­ment of the equip­ment, and if ev­ery­thing goes smoothly, the unit will be ready for rapid de­ploy­ment, he said.

LI HUISI / CHINA NEWS SER­VICE

UN po­lice unit mem­bers from China prac­tice in Lang­fang, He­bei prov­ince, on Wed­nes­day.

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