The effective withdrawal of Ukrainian troops operating within the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo is now official. The information is given this Sunday 18 September by the United Nations. This withdrawal of Ukrainian troops and the embarkation of their equipment is not without consequences for MONUSCO, which is already experiencing its first difficulties.
More Ukrainian soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ukrainian troops have officially withdrawn from MONUSCO at the request of their government. The United Nations Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) made this known in a press release dated Sunday 18 September 2022.
Ten years of collaboration, no Ukrainian military equipment left behind
Ukrainian forces have worked closely with MONUSCO for ten years. This was very much appreciated by the Force Commander, General Marcos Da Costa, who praised the immense contribution of the Ukrainian soldiers to the service of the Congolese people.
Another official of the mission said that the Ukrainian troops withdrew with their combat equipment and transports, including helicopters that provided logistics to MONUSCO.
MONUSCO faces first challenges after withdrawal
The withdrawal of the Ukrainian aviation unit was announced in March, but the United Nations did not give the green light for the withdrawal until later.
And since that time, diplomats had warned that the UN mission was in danger of running out of helicopters, as the eight Ukrainian helicopters represented about one-third of the UN fleet.
Congolese army at the forefront of peacemaking
Jacques Ndjoli is a member of the parliamentary defense committee of the Democratic Republic of Congo. According to him, this withdrawal is relatively serious, but he said that the restoration of peace in the country is a mission that falls primarily to the Congolese army.
Ukrainian forces present in several countries on call of the UN
Ukraine has 250 soldiers led by six officers, but also five police officers and seven UN experts in the DRC. The country also has 16 troops in South Sudan, 12 in Mali, 5 in Cyprus, 4 in Abyei in Sudan and 3 in Kosovo, according to the United Nations, which mobilizes more than 100,000 peacekeepers to its member countries.
The United Nations Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) has already lasted 22 years when it is supposed to end. But so far, no date has been set for the end of its operations.
It should be noted that MONUSCO is one of the largest and most expensive of the 12 UN peacekeeping missions.