From: Defence Media Centre
Sent: Thu 8/09/2011 2:08 PM

Minister for Defence meets United Nations Secretary-General

Today I met with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to discuss Australia’s commitment to international security and United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions.

Australia has a long and proud history of contributing to UN peacekeeping missions, deploying over 65,000 peacekeepers to more than 50 operations since 1947. We continue that commitment today with deployments to five UN peacekeeping missions, as well as contributions to UN-mandated operations in the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific.

I reiterated Australia’s offer of 25 Australian Defence Force (ADF) peacekeepers to the new UN Mission in South Sudan. This commitment would see ADF peacekeepers help South Sudan build a peaceful and secure future.

Secretary-General Ban and I also discussed his recent visit to the Pacific, including the Solomon Islands, where the Australian-led Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI) has resulted in an improved security environment.

We discussed recent developments in Libya, including Australia’s significant contribution to humanitarian relief.

We discussed the improved security situation in East Timor and the future of the UN Integrated Mission in East Timor. I underlined Australia’s commitment to working with the UN and the Government of East Timor to ensure a smooth transition.

Mr Smith’s Office: (02) 6277 7800
Departmental: (02) 6127 1999