Apr 14, New York: The United Nations expect the member states contributing troops to peace keeping operations to ensure that none of the soldiers being deployed to UN missions are not implicated in any sexual abuse, the Spokesman for the Secretary-General Stéphane Dujarric said Thursday.
The Spokesman said the UN expects Sri Lanka to do the same and ensure that everyone being deployed is vetted for past implication of sexual abuse.
"Everyone is, is vetted, and the troop contributors have a responsibility to certify that none of the soldiers that are being deployed from wherever they come from have ever been implicated in any sexual abuse, and we would expect Sri Lanka and all other troop contributors to do the same," the Spokesman said.
Responding to media query whether any of the over 100 Sri Lankan peacekeepers in Haiti, who were alleged in an AP investigative report of sexually abusing children, ever prosecuted, and if not why the Department of Peacekeeping Operations continues to deploy Sri Lankan soldiers to three UN missions, the Spokesman said there was no deployment of Sri Lankan peacekeepers for a long time.
He said the new UN Secretary General António Guterres has pushed for greater accountability from member states but member states always don't provide the UN with the information.
"The issue of impunity of peacekeepers who committed horrendous crimes, who violated the trust given to them and were not persecuted is one of the reasons, and one of the many reasons, this Secretary‑General and his predecessor have pushed for greater accountability and have pushed for greater partnership for Member States. And Member States have not always given us the information we needed," he said.
Among the cases investigated in Haiti, at least 134 Sri Lankan peacekeepers exploited nine children in a sex ring from 2004 to 2007, according to an internal U.N. report obtained by the Associated Press.