China and UN Peacekeeping

Rumours are swirling around UN headquarters that China is hoping that the next head of the Department of UN Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) will be one of their countrymen. It is an office that has always been held by someone from the West, France, the UK, the US, Canada, etc, as it is seen as an obviously influential position in determining when, where, and how, UN peacekeeping missions around the world do their jobs.

China’s involvement with UN peacekeeping has been growing steadily in the last few years, and they now more troops than the other permanent members of the Security Council combined (not saying much, the others do not contribute troops very often), but more significantly is the second largest funder of peacekeeping operations after the United States. Therefore it is perhaps not surprising that China is seeking this top spot, though given China has also recently tried to roll back human rights protections related to UN peacekeeping, it is unlikely the US, UK, and France will quietly let this happen.

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