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China dispatches third peacekeeping infantry battalion to South Sudan

China despatched the first 120 of a 700-member peacekeeping infantry battalion to Juba, capital of South Sudan on Dec. 4.

The remainder of the infantry battalion, which has been assigned to a 12-month United Nations (UN) peacekeeping mission, will leave in five separate groups.

The peacekeepers have all attended a three-month peacekeeping course and will be engaged with the protection of civilians, supporting UN and humanitarian relief programs, patrols and escorts.

The infantry battalion is the third Chinese team to be dispatched to South Sudan, since the country deployed its first peacekeeping infantry battalion in South Sudan in 2015.

In July this year, two Chinese peacekeepers were killed and five others were injured during a peacekeeping mission in Juba.

China currently has over 2,600 peacekeeping personnel involved in 10 UN peacekeeping operations, making China the most active permanent member of the UN Security Council in terms of supplying peacekeeping personnel.

Meantime, China has sent a 13-soldier female squad, the army unit dispatching them last Friday.

It is the third batch of Chinese peacekeepers sent to South Sudan. From Sunday, they took United Nations charter flights to the mission area, replacing the second batch of Chinese peacekeepers.

The female infantry squad will carry out humanitarian relief and protect the rights of women and children, said Ding Hailong, battalion commander.

The battalion is comprised of officers and soldiers from the 54th Group Army, including foot soldiers, armored units, artillery forces, signal troops and special warfare troops and others.

A total of 138 have conducted peacekeeping missions before, and 166 peacekeepers have won merits of third-class and above.

The infantry battalion will be deployed in South Sudan’s capital city of Juba, protecting civilians, UN staff and humanitarian relief programs, with patrols, escorts and other missions.

 

Source: Xinhua | December 5

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