New York – The United Nations paid tribute to Morocco on Saturday for its contribution to peacekeeping efforts, with a special dedication afforded to the Moroccan blue helmets and their families for their services and sacrifices.
On the occasion, the UN published a collection of photos and posters thanking Morocco for its service and sacrifice, the UN said in a press release.
The tribute to Morocco is part of the UN global communication campaign, “Thank you UN peacekeepers for your service and sacrifice, “to raise awareness of the strategic importance of peacekeeping operations” and to express recognition to participating countries, peacekeepers, and their families for their sacrifices.
As the 14th largest troop contributor to UN Peacekeeping operations, Morocco provides 1,600 military and police officers to UN peacekeeping efforts, according to the UN.
Since 1948, more than a million women and men have served as UN peacekeepers. More than 3,500 peacekeeping personnel have lost their lives serving in UN operations, including 43 Moroccans.
Every day, UN peacekeepers make a tangible difference in the lives of millions of the world’s most vulnerable people.
Blue Helmet Tribute
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres paid special tribute to the Moroccan blue helmets, who provide humanitarian assistance and protect civilians in conflict areas.
In particular, Guterres Master Corporal Rachid Abarki, who recently died of natural causes on April 24:
“…My sincere condolences for this painful loss and express my gratitude for the contribution of Master Corporal Abarki to our peace action in the Central African Republic,” Guterres wrote, in a letter to Morocco’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Omar Hilale
Master Corporal Abarki served with the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), which works to protect civilians.
During his funeral, the head of the Moroccan division of MINUSCA, called Abarki an “exceptional soldier” and praised the military leader’s integrity and professionalism.”