Policy Areas

Improving the safety of UN and associated personnel

As the EU, Norway is committed to effective multilateralism. In line with this commitment, the Norwegian government this week decided to sign the additional protocol to the UN Convention on Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel of 9 December 1994.

25/01/2006 :: The additional protocol was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 8 December 2005. The protocol expands the scope of legal protection of UN and associated personnel providing humanitarian assistance, through a commitment by the host state to ensure the safety and security of personnel in the field and to prosecute anyone who attacks UN or associated personnel.

The protocol will be particularly important for humanitarian organisations and it also covers locally recruited personnel who are working with the UN. The agreement will also be important for Norwegian personnel taking part in international humanitarian operations.

“The agreement is an important step forward in the efforts to safeguard UN personnel and other civilians taking part in humanitarian operations,” said Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre.

According to the UN Secretary-General, 229 civilians involved in UN operations have been killed in criminal incidents since 1992. This highlights the need for better protection of civilians taking part in humanitarian operations.

Norway has played an active role during the negotiations on the additional protocol. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will strongly encourage other countries to become party to the convention and to the additional protocol.

The additional protocol has been open for signature from 16 January this year and Norway will be one of the first countries to sign.

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UN Building in New YorkPhoto: United Nations