Indian women peacekeepers are an inspiration for young Liberian girls to join the West African nation's law enforcement agencies, a top UN official said here.
"The inspiration you have provided to Liberian girls and women will be among the many lasting impressions of your work here in Liberia, which will leave a positive legacy in the rule of law in Liberia," Ellen Margrethe Loj, Special Representative of Secretary General to Liberia, said on Friday while decorating 125 Indian women peacekeepers.
The group serving with the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) was awarded peacekeeping medals for their contribution to peace and stability in Liberia. Among the top brass of the UN and Liberian government attending the medal ceremony was Indian ambassador to Liberia, Shamma Jain.
During its 15-year-long civil war, Liberian women have suffered from rampant rape and other forms of sexual violence. The peacekeeping unit, comprising of Indian women, is the first all female UN police unit, which has been stationed in Liberia since 2007, and will return in 2010.
Women presently compromise eight per cent of the 10,000 UN police officers, and two per cent of the 80,000 military personnel. The UN is making efforts to engage more women peacekeepers in their missions all over the world.