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Rwanda Peace Academy Starts a Course on Protection of Civilians

Musanze, 26 February 2018

Thirty-six (36) military, police and civilian officers from 11 countries, namely Benin, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Netherlands, Rwanda, Switzerland, Uganda, the United States of America and Zambia have started the ‘United Nations Integrated Comprehensive Protection of Civilians Training of Trainers Course’ at Rwanda Peace Academy (RPA) in Musanze District, on 26 February 2018.

According to the Director of RPA, Col Jill Rutaremara, the aim of the course is to familiarise peacekeeping trainers with the newly developed Comprehensive Protection of civilians Course package in order to enable them deliver the same course in their respective countries.

In his opening remarks, Maj Gen Ferdinand Safari, the Director General of Policy and Strategy at the Ministry of Defence said that the course will equip participants with a comprehensive and holistic view of contemporary armed conflicts. 

“Effective Protection of Civilians (PoC) requires a comprehensive and holistic view that combines elements from PoC, child protection, and Conflict - Related Sexual Violence while at the same time treating each element with unique considerations. It also requires proper interpretation of mandates within the boundaries of the UN policies, guidelines and principles … Coordination, collaboration and information sharing among the relevant stakeholders is also necessary for effective implementation of PoC mandate”. He said.

One of the participants from Zambia, Capt Mainza Chipunza said that she expects to learn more on the protection of civilians especially how to engage with the local women and children who are the most vulnerable. 

The one-week course is the outcome of an ongoing collaborative effort between Rwanda Peace Academy, Government of Netherlands, the United States of America and the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO).

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