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CYPRUS: Russia could deploy some troops to UNFICYP

17 April, 2019

Russia has expressed a readiness to deploy up to five personnel from its armed forces to the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP).


According to the Tass News Agency, Russian President Vladimir Putin has instructed the Foreign Ministry and the Defence Ministry to inform the UN Secretariat that Russia is ready to send up to 30 Russian servicemen to the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) and up to 5 members of the military to the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP).

According to an official document the Russian Foreign Ministry is entrusted with informing the UN Secretariat of "Russia’s readiness to send up to 5 servicemen of the Russian Armed Forces to the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus as liaison officers, military observers and staff officers," the presidential order informs.

In March 2016, the Russian flag was raised at UNFICYP HQ as the first ever Russian deployment commenced their duties with the Mission. The deployment included three female police officers who joined UNFICYP's police component. Russia was the 21st country contributing troops to the peacekeeping force in Cyprus.

UNFICYP is one of the longest-running UN Peacekeeping missions. It was set up in 1964 to prevent further fighting between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities on the island and bring about a return to normal conditions.

It is also the only UN peacekeeping mission where the top three positions - civilian, military and police - are all held by women.