Phnom Penh: Sar Savy a Cambodian “blue helmet”, will be awarded posthumously the Dag Hammarskjold Medal on the International Day of UN Peacekeepers on May 27 along with more than 100 UN peacekeepers. The medal is awarded by the UN to military personnel, police or civilian forces who sacrificed their lives while serving in UN peacekeeping operations.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will preside over the ceremony at which the medal will be awarded to 129 personnel who died serving under the UN flag last year and in the first month of this year. Guterres will lay a wreath to honour the more than 4,000 UN peacekeepers who have lost their lives since 1948.
The colonel led the explosive ordnance disposal unit 231 on a mission to the country in April 2019. After completing the mission, he planned on returning to Cambodia in April 2020, but was delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic. A total of 27 Cambodian blue helmets have lost their lives while serving as UN Peacekeepers, said the press release.
“Cambodia is the 27th largest contributor of uniformed personnel to UN Peacekeeping. It currently deploys 767 peacekeepers to the UN peace operations in Abyei, the Central African Republic, Lebanon, Mali, Sudan, and South Sudan,” it said. “I offer sincere condolences to the families of peacekeepers who have fallen victim to this terrible disease,” he added.
The International Day of UN Peacekeepers was established by the UN General Assembly in 2002 to pay tribute to all men and women serving in peacekeeping, and to honour the memory of those who have lost their lives in the cause of peace.