The United Nations peacekeeping force was a unit established by the UN to prevent conflict, reduce violence and strengthen security. Many countries have contributed to the UN peacekeeping force by sending their troops. Indonesia is one of them.
Indonesia is well known to have a strong commitment to bring peace and stability to post-conflict countries. Since 1957, Indonesia has sent a total of 24,000 peacekeepers to join the UN Peacekeeping Operations. Currently, Indonesia has sent 2,581 personnel in the recent peacekeeping mission as well as military equipment to help the UN peacekeeping mission.
Indonesia Peacekeeping force is called the Garuda Contingent since its establishment during the founding father President Sukarno’s era. The first Garuda Contingent was deployed to Egypt to deescalate tension between Israel and Egypt one year after the Suez Crisis.
The most impactful contribution of Indonesia was when its 200 peacekeepers from the MINUSCA (Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic) Indonesian Engineering Company were awarded the UN service medals on August 17, 2021, for their contribution to peace and stability in the Central African Republic (CAR).
Indonesia has also sent female soldiers in the UN peacekeeping forces. They have been recognized for their roles in getting closer to local communities in conflict areas, especially in protecting women and children.
Military equipment for UN
Indonesia weapon manufacture has also greatly contributed to the UN peacekeeping efforts. Since 2010, state-owned weapons manufacturer PT Pindad has sent equipment for the UN peacekeeping mission. The equipment consists of Anoa Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) and SS2 assault rifles. The use of these military equipment has been widely popular for the Garuda contingent joining the UN peacekeeping force. These equipments have provided protection and mobility to the UN force.
Indonesia in UN Maritime Task Force
Indonesia is also supporting on maintaining maritime interdiction operations and surveillance on the peacekeeping mission’s territorial waters, such as in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). The troops supported Lebanese Navy in monitoring their territorial waters, securing the coastline while preventing any unauthorized entry of arms by sea into Lebanon.
The most recent event was when the KRI (warship) Frans Kaisiepo was recently assigned to the UNIFIL MTF (Maritime Task Force) by helping the a sinking ship on December 31, 2022. A teamwork consists of the Lebanese Navy, KRI Frans Kaisiepo and Greek frigate Spetsai was able to save 232 souls from the ill fated ship. The task force returned to Tripoli to transfer the survivors to shore and handed them over to the Lebanese authorities.