Contemporary Technology in Peacekeeping Operations

Wing Commander Swaim Prakash Singh, MSc, MPhil, psc+ is working as a Senior Fellow at the Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), New Delhi. He is currently pursuing Ph.D. (thesis submitted) in Defence and Strategic Studies.
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  • July-September 2020

    Since the Cold War, United Nations peacekeeping has evolved from monitoring peace treaties to multidimensional peacekeeping operations tasked with rebuilding states and their institutions during and after conflict. In June 2014, An Expert Panel on Technology and Innovation in UN Peacekeeping recommended investigating how innovative technology can strengthen peacekeeping missions. The report suggested greater use of advanced technologies, such as increased use of ground and airborne sensors and other technical data sources, advanced data analytics, and information fusion to aid in data integration. Since then, the United Nations has continuously pursued efforts in this field. India, during its tenure of the presidency of the UN Security Council in August 2021, raised three significant issues. These were ‘Accountability of Crimes against UN Peacekeepers’, ‘Technology for Peacekeeping’ and ‘UNITE Aware Situational Awareness Technology Platform’.

    This article attempts to highlight these issues with possible solutions from contemporary technology that can be used on a larger scale by UN security forces in various missions for maintaining peace, situational awareness with rapid decision-making and conflict resolution. In addition, this article highlights the importance of sticking to the basics to arrive at specific solutions. It also presents a perspective on exploring United Nations Peacekeeping Missions in Africa as a potential market for self-reliance under the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’.

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