ASEANAPOL Executive Director Speaks at 76th UN Peacekeepers Day in the Philippines

by muhammad anas | May 30, 2024

On May 29, 2024, the Philippines commemorated the 76th International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers with the theme “Fit for the Future: Building Better Together.” The event featured David Martinez Vinluan, Executive Director of the ASEANAPOL Secretariat, as a resource person.
For 76 years, United Nations peacekeepers have worked to save and change lives in the world’s most fragile political and security situations. Since 1948, more than two million uniformed and civilian personnel have helped countries transition from war to peace. Today, over 70,000 peacekeepers serve in 11 missions deployed in hotspots around the world.
In December 2002, the United Nations General Assembly designated May 29 as the International Day of UN Peacekeepers. This date was chosen because, on May 29, 1948, the UN Security Council authorized the first United Nations peacekeeping operation in West Asia, establishing the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) to monitor the ceasefire agreement between the newly created state of Israel and its Arab neighbors. The first International Day of UN Peacekeepers was observed on May 29, 2003.
This year's program, hosted by the Philippine National Police, was attended by representatives from the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of the Interior and Local Government, the Department of National Defense, veteran UN peacekeepers from the police and military, and criminology students from leading colleges and universities in Metro Manila.
Executive Director Vinluan, a UN Police veteran and former UNHQ staff member, was one of four veteran resource speakers at the symposium. He presented on the topic “Relevance of International Peacekeeping in Today’s Time,” discussing the critical role peacekeeping plays in maintaining global stability, preventing conflict, and supporting political transitions in fragile states.
Additionally, Vinluan introduced ASEANAPOL to the audience, emphasizing the organization's importance in the regional law enforcement landscape. He highlighted ASEANAPOL's vision of fostering a safer and more secure ASEAN community through enhanced cooperation and collaboration among member countries. Vinluan elaborated on ASEANAPOL's mission to combat emerging threats of transnational crime, such as human trafficking, drug smuggling, cybercrime, and terrorism. He underscored how these threats not only endanger individual nations but also pose significant challenges to regional and global peace and security.
By raising awareness about ASEANAPOL's initiatives and objectives, Vinluan aimed to foster greater public understanding and support for the organization's efforts. He stressed the need for collective action and international cooperation in addressing transnational crime, as well as the crucial role that organizations like ASEANAPOL play in promoting stability and security across the region and beyond.
The relevance of international peacekeeping in today's world cannot be overstated. It stands as an indispensable tool for promoting peace, stability, and prosperity in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. As we navigate the challenges of the 21st century, let us reaffirm our unwavering commitment to international peacekeeping and strive together to build a more peaceful and secure future for all.
“Together We Keep This Region Safe”