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    UN Mulls Increasing Number of Female Peacekeepers - Guterres

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    UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) - The United Nations expects to increase the number of women among peacekeeping troops and police on the African continent to strengthen the security in the region, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the Security Council on Tuesday.

    "Increasing the numbers of women in peacekeeping at all levels is another way to improve the effectiveness of our operations," Guterres said. "I am taking steps to ensure that my gender parity strategies are implemented across all our peacekeeping missions and to increase the number of female troops and police."

    Guterres added that the United Nations is mobilizing to address sexual exploitation in the African Union and African countries, adopt a zero-tolerance policy and provide more support to victims when they seek justice.

    The UN chief also paid tribute to peacekeepers that have died in the line of duty, including the eight peacekeepers killed last week in eastern Congo.

    Seven out of 14 UN peacekeeping operations are based in Africa, and the continent provides nearly half of the personnel deployed worldwide, according to the United Nations.

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