The United Nations Peacekeeping is a role held by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations as "a unique and dynamic instrument developed by the organization as a way to help countries torn by conflict to create the conditions for lasting peace."
The Blue Helmets – as they are often called because of their bright blue protective headgear, are usually sent to war-torn areas to protect civilians from the line of battle and do their best to prevent conflict and war from escalating. The activities of these peacekeepers have saved a lot of lives that were caught in the heat of battle and a sight of them is often a huge relief to people in such regions.
This is why it is often a thing of worry when there are targeted attacks on peacekeepers because indeed, an attack on a peacekeeper is an attack on peace – why would anyone do such?
According to reports, gunmen attacked the base of UN peacekeepers yesterday in northern Mali where at least eight Chadian peacekeepers have been reported dead.
“According to a new toll, still provisional, at least eight peacekeepers have been killed,” a source quoted by AFP said.
"The attack was carried out in the early hours of yesterday, Jan 20th, at the Aguelhok base 200 kilometers (125 miles) north of Kidal towards the border with Algeria," the source added.
You will recall that there was an attack at the same base in April 2018 which left two peacekeepers dead and several others wounded.
Earlier this month, France and the United States accused the Malian government of their failure to stem the worsening violence in the country despite the 2015 peace agreement.
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Header Image Credit: Africa.com