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Press Release – Annual Consultations between the UN and the CoESPU in Vicenza took place today


Annual Consultations between the UN and the CoESPU in Vicenza took place today

New York, December 3rd 2021. Today, the Permanent Mission of Italy to the UN hosted the consultations between the UN Department of Peace Operations (DPO) and the CoESPU (Centre of Excellence for Stability Police Units), headquartered in Vicenza and tasked with training the UN peacekeeping units also known as “Blue Helmets”.

Italy’s Deputy Permanent Representative, Ambassador Stefano Stefanile and the Assitant Secretary General Alexander Zouev opened the consultations joined by General D. Fabrizio Parulli, Defense Attaché and Military Adviser for the Mission, General B. Giovanni Barbano, CoESPU’s Director, and other officers from the DPO. Col. Glenn Sadowsky from the Office of the Military Adviser of the US Mission at the UN participated as well.

The meeting was scheduled as a follow-up to the cooperation agreement the UN and the CoESPU signed in 2010, an agreement that has no precedent in the UN history. The CoESPU, whose headquarters are located in Vicenza and which is co-administered by the US and the Italian special force of Carabinieri, is tasked with training the Blue Helmets with police force skills.

The center can boast 12,000 trained units including 1,400 female agents hailing from 124 nations, especially from African countries, and stands out as a cutting-edge training center for peacekeeping forces.

Today’s meeting took stock of the progress in the UN-CoESPU partnership, the latest achievements attained and focused on enhancing the three pillars of Italy’s peacekeeping endeavor. The first pillar encompasses human resources, with Italy ranking first among Western countries for its share of military units it allocates, and financials, as Italy is the seventh largest contributor to the UN peacekeeping budget. The second pillar pertains to doctrine and training, with application to the negotiations at the UN Headquarters and in Vicenza, and concerning gender-based violence in the context of civil rights’ protection. The third and last pillar corresponds to logistics, with the base in Brindisi serving as a crucial Hub for Global Services for UN peacekeeping missions.

Therefore, Italy continues to be one of the Western countries most committed to supporting the UN peacekeeping missions. Italy’s efforts are praised not only for the volume and value of the armed force it contributes with, but also for the mindset and practices that shape its action of its peacekeeping endeavors.

Italy’s approach stands out for its integrated method that emphasizes cooperation in the civil, military, and police sectors and the dialogue with local populations, with a special attention paid to the peacekeeping missions’ footprint on the environment, and to the safeguard of the cultural heritage in the aftermath of a conflict.