Minister of Defence to open international peacekeeping conference in Auckland

Minister of Defence Ron Mark will today open the annual International Association of Peacekeeping Training Centre conference.  This year the conference is being held in Auckland.

“New Zealand is proud to host this pre-eminent conference on peacekeeping,” says Ron Mark.

“Peacekeeping environments are becoming increasingly high risk and volatile, and this conference is an opportunity for experts to come together and confront some of the key challenges.”

New Zealander David Shearer, who is currently the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General for South Sudan, is among the international group who have travelled to New Zealand to share their peacekeeping expertise.

New Zealand will also take on the presidency of the International Association of Peacekeeping Training Centres during the conference. Colonel Helen Cooper of the New Zealand Defence Force will become the first female President in the Association’s 24-year history.

“The conference is also an opportunity to celebrate the contribution Pacific nations have made to international peacekeeping,” says Ron Mark.

280 international delegates are expected to attend the four-day conference.