29 October 2008 – The AU-UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) today awarded UN Peacekeeping medals to its Force Headquarters staff officers and contingents deployed in El Fasher, in acknowledgement of their contributions to maintaining peace in Darfur. The contingents represented included the Egyptian Engineering and Signal Companies, Gambian Company, Kenyan Military Police and the Rwandese Quick Reaction Force.
“You offer an invaluable service by providing a secure environment for the people of North Darfur, while also ensuring the work of the Mission can continue,” said the Deputy Joint Special Representative (DJSR) for Operations and Management, Mr. Hocine Medili, speaking on behalf of the JSR Rodolphe Adada at the medal parade. In addition, he praised the members of the UNAMID Force for their efforts in planning and executing grassroots projects which have helped improve the lives of Darfurians, winning the hearts and minds of various communities.
The Deputy Special Representative recognized that, while Darfur is one of the most challenging peacekeeping environments, the tasks of UNAMID troops are critical to the success of the Mission. The Egyptian Companies provides engineering and signal support to the Mission; the Gambian Company provides security at UNAMID Headquarters in El Fasher; the Kenyan Military Police, amongst others, enforces UNAMID regulations and security instructions and provides security escorts; and the Rwandan Quick Reaction Force provides escorts to UNAMID logistics units in El Fasher and is on call to respond to any emergencies.
The medal parade ceremony was attended by the Deputy Wali (Governor) of North Darfur, Mr. Idris Abdullah Hassan, UNAMID Force Commander, General Martin Luther Agwai; other dignitaries from North Darfur State; and UNAMID officials.
United Nations Security Council Resolution 1769 (2007) authorized the deployment of up to 19,555 military personnel, including 360 military observers and liaison officers and up to 3,772 police personnel and 19 formed police units. There are currently 9,073 military personnel serving with UNAMID.