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United Nations Police
Flag Emblem
Map of UN member states.a
Headquarters International territory
New York City
Official languages
Membership 193 member states
 •  Secretary-General South Korea Ban Ki-moon
 •  President of the General Assembly Switzerland Joseph Deiss
 •  UN Charter signed 26 June 1945 
 •  Charter in force 24 October 1945 
United Nations Police
a. Note that this map does not represent the view of its members or the UN concerning the legal status of any country,[1] nor does it accurately reflect which areas' governments have UN representation.

The UN Police is an integral part of the United Nations peace operations. Currently there are over 12,500 UN Police operating in over 90 countries. The goal of the UN Police is to help create a safer environment, as well as protecting civilians from criminal activities. The UN Police works throughout the world through 17 different field missions.


Since the 1960s, the United Nations have been positioning police officers in certain peace operations. These operations were originally limited to monitoring, observing and reporting, but by the early 1990s, advising, mentoring and training of these personnel were adopted into the activities of the peace operations. This UN Police force now acts as a corrective power with domestic police and other law enforcement organisations.

The United Nations Police are a significant part of the United Nations agency and they lead by promoting peace and security. This is evident through the daily patrolling, advising of other domestic police services and their insurance to uphold human rights. They restore the public safety and the rule of law through the United Nations. Their role has expanded rapidly over the last decade. Not only has the United Nations almost tripled the number of police authorised for deployment, but also the United Nations Police now has control over mandating multi-dimensional roles within the system. In the UN missions in Kosovo and East Timor, UN Police were given an executive mandate to safeguard law and order while facilitating the launch of a new domestic police service. The UN Police mission in Kosovo helped to successfully establish the Kosovo Police Service, while in Timor-Leste, districts of the country have been continuously handed over to the National Police, while UN Police return to their more traditional role of advising and supervising operations. In the past 15 years, the number of United Nations Police officers in action has significantly increased from 5,840 to 17,500.

The UN Police are typically deployed with military personnel in most of the “peacekeeping operations” and are also advisers in special UN political missions. Their duties are specific to the type of mission that is given. Also the roles of the policemen differ according to the mandate of the mission they are working. For example, some of their missions include policing inside refugee or internally displaced persons camps, mentoring or training national police officers, providing help in certain types of investigations and helping address transnational crimes. All of these projects sum up the overall aim of the UN Police to reinforce and create conditions for sustainable peace and development.[2][3][4]


The duties and roles of the UN Police (UNPOL) component in a Peacekeeping Operation or in a Special Political Mission may vary, depending on each mission's reality.

The host-State policing institutions are, often, primarily responsible for the link between the government and security issues.[5] Therefore, UNPOL play an important role on building the capacity of the host government policing institutions and other law enforcement agencies, specially in conflict and post conflict situations, including technical assistance, co-location, training and mentoring programs, where mandated.

Essentially, there are three different categories to work in United Nations Police Component:

1) As an Individual Police Officer (IPO): An IPO is temporary seconded, individually, to work within United Nations and share his/her knowledge with the host-State policing institutions. United Nations efforts are to bring high specialized officers to mission areas. Some of the requirements to work as an Individual Police Officer, for instance, are to be at least 25 years old, maximum 62, with a minimum police-related working experience of 5 years.[6]

2) As part of a Formed Police Unit (FPU) component: FPU roles includes crowd control and protection of UN assets. The whole component is assessed as a unit before being deployed to a peacekeeping operation [7]

3) As a professional and higher categories staff: This kind of appointment may allow you to initiate a career in United Nations, and often a master's degree or higher education is required. The salaries are higher and this include special functions in a mission like Chiefs and Senior Police Advisers.

Also, UNPOL may be responsible for:

  • Policy and guidance development: Creating policy and guidance and defining the parameters of international police peacekeeping.
  • Strategic planning: Strengthening the Police Division’s resources and ability to conduct strategic planning.
  • Selection and recruitment processes: Improving efforts to recruit, select, deploy and rotate highly qualified staff in missions. Increasing the number of female officers in the UN Police service.
  • Operational support to missions through the Standing Police Capacity: Increasing the effectiveness of the operational support provided by the Standing Police Capacity.
  • Response to Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV): Strengthening its response to sexual and gender-based violence and creating guidance to assist its police officers.
  • Global Lead, partnerships and regional cooperation: leading the area of international policing and developing partnerships for more effective delivery of its mandates.

Current operations[edit]


The United Nations Office for the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OCHR) expressed its deep concern over excessive use of force by Guinea’s security forces against demonstrators ahead of long-delayed presidential run-off polls. One man was killed and more than 60 others injured when Government forces used live fire in their effort to quell demonstrations in the capital, Conakry.

The Office said that while it appreciated that authorities had a difficult task in dealing with the demonstrations, which in some cases degenerated into violence, including stone throwing. But it said that it believes Government forces committed serious rights violations by indiscriminately shooting at unarmed civilians, sometimes at point-blank range; breaking into and ransacking private homes; and severely beating young men who put up no resistance. Some of the security forces’ operations appeared to target entire areas indiscriminately and little effort was made to distinguish between violent protestors and those who had taken no part in the demonstrations, OHCHR said. It has also been confirmed that an unknown number of people were arbitrarily denied lawyers, also breaking the law.


Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Security Council have begun strongly condemning the suicide attack on the United Nations compound in Afghanistan's western city of Herat, where members of staff of the UN mission in the country and other agencies are based. There were no casualties among the UN staff, but some security guards were wounded, the spokesperson of the Secretary-General said in a statement. A number of assailants were killed in the attack, and the UN is conducting a full investigation. In addition, the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) also condemned the attack and stressed that the Organisation was in the country to support efforts to restore peace and provide humanitarian and development assistance to the people. The attack did not disrupt UN activities in Herat, however.


The United Nations stands ready to assist the upcoming referendum that will decide whether southern Sudan declares independence from Africa’s largest country, an official with the world body said today, with voter registration set to kick off in two weeks. During voting day, more than 3,000 registration kits for distribution in southern Sudan and 840 kits for the north, along with registration books and cards, were handed over to the SSRC and its bureau in Juba, the southern capital.


  • 1960: the first police officers are used in the UN Operation in Congo (ONUC)
  • 1964: marks the first time the formal police component is used in the UN Peacekeeping force in Cyprus
  • 1989: saw the increased use of the UN Police because of the end of the Cold War.
- Police are used in peacekeeping operations in Namibia, El Salvador, and Mozambique
- Recognised as a central tool for helping countries recover from conflict
  • 1999: UN Police are deployed to Kosovo
  • 2000: 5840 UN Police are on peacekeeping missions
  • 2006: The standing capacity is established
  • 2007: A half women FPU is sent from India to Liberia
- Officers are also sent to Darfur


Some of the functions of the UN Police include:

  • Interim law enforcement
Responsible for policing and all law enforcement. Some examples are the operations in Kosovo and Timor-Leste
  • Formed police units
These are used for crowd control and quelling riots
  • Protecting UN personnel
- They also work in tandem with local law enforcement

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The World Today" (PDF). Retrieved 18 June 2009. The designations employed and the presentation of material on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country 
  2. ^ "United Nations Police". Un.org. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  3. ^ "United Nations Police — Global Collaborative". Gc.nautilus.org. 2009-02-26. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  4. ^ "UN Police". Unmit.unmissions.org. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  5. ^ http://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/RES/2185%20%282014%29
  6. ^ http://www.beapeacekeeper.com/uneligible
  7. ^ http://www.beapeacekeeper.com/fpu_assessment

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UN_Police — Please support Wikipedia.
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7045 news items

Voice of America

Voice of America
Tue, 26 Apr 2016 15:22:07 -0700

Members of the Burundian diaspora and exiled civil society leaders demonstrated Tuesday in front of the United Nations, urging the international community to send a robust U.N. police force to help protect civilians as their country enters a second ...

Deutsche Welle

Deutsche Welle
Mon, 18 Apr 2016 07:04:08 -0700

A day earlier, it was disclosed that current UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was proposing three options for a new UN police mission to Burundi. In a report to the UN Security Council, Ban said that dispatching a force of 3,000 "was the only option ...

International Business Times UK

International Business Times UK
Thu, 21 Apr 2016 10:20:34 -0700

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has said it is worried the options proposed by the United Nations (UN) Secretary General for a new UN police mission to Burundi may be a "waste of resources and time" as the majority of the proposals would be "ineffective".

UN News Centre

UN News Centre
Fri, 01 Apr 2016 17:36:32 -0700

Security Council requests options on deploying UN police in crisis-torn Burundi. People demonstrate in Bujumbura against a decision by Burundi's ruling party to nominate President Pierre Nkurunziza to run for a third term (April 2015). Photo: Desire ...

This is Sierra Leone

This is Sierra Leone
Tue, 26 Apr 2016 06:52:30 -0700

The UN police chief also noted, “A closer partnership between the public and their police service would not only create trust between the police and the population but is a sure path to a safe environment, and would assist with maintaining public order ...

Business Insider

Business Insider
Sat, 02 Apr 2016 10:03:45 -0700

NAIROBI (Reuters) - Burundi accepts the United Nations security council's resolution to send in police, the foreign affairs minister told Reuters on Saturday, after months of political tension. The 15-member council unanimously adopted on Friday a ...
Wed, 13 Apr 2016 04:52:54 -0700

Burundi's government said it needs only 20 United Nations police officers to boost security in the East African country, about two days before UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is due to present options for deploying a force. Government spokesman ...


Tue, 19 Apr 2016 07:15:00 -0700

UN Police Chief and staff together with Kambia Police Officers The Chief of the Standing Police Capacity (SPC) in the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), Ms. Maria Appelblom, said last week that Sierra Leone has made impressive gains in ...

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