UN chief calls for embracing digital world for conducting peacekeeping missions

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

New York [US], August 18 (ANI): UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday called for the member states to fully embrace the digital world for conducting peacekeeping missions as conflicts have become more intense.

During an Open Debate on 'Technology and Peacekeeping' at UNSC, Guterres said digital technology represents one of the greatest opportunities but one of the "greatest challenges of our time."

"Conflicts have become more intense and tools of warfare are increasingly sophisticated. Digital transformation should focus on cost-effective and widely available technologies," UN chief said.

"Digital technology represents one of the greatest opportunities but one of the greatest challenges of our time. The international community must come together better to govern the digital space for good while addressing its many challenges," he added.

UN chief said new technologies are changing the scale and speed of attack as well as the character and nature of violence in war, with an indelible impact on the civilian populations. "These developments create new and emerging challenges for peace operations."

"It is essential that it fully embraces the digital world in which we live to improve the UN's agility, anticipation and responsiveness to conflict and to be able to adapt and to address the challenges of today and tomorrow," UN chief further added.

Meanwhile, India proposed a four-point framework to lay architecture for securing UN peacekeepers against contemporary threats.

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar said UN peacekeeping simply cannot afford to cede the information advantage to those actors determined to undermine prospects for peace by using modern technology to aid their violent cause. He said India believes in "walking the talk" when it comes to the safety and security of UN peacekeepers.

Speaking during the same debate, Chinese representatives welcomed the presidential statement on peacekeeping just adopted by the Council.

"We welcome the presidential statement on peacekeeping just adopted by the Council. Use of technology in peacekeeping should focus on safety of personnel..., prior consultation with respective countries before surveillance should be done to respect their sovereignty," Chinese representatives said. (ANI)

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