The First Woman to Command a UNIFIL Contingent

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1 Jun 2017

The First Woman to Command a UNIFIL Contingent

Last week Major Nina Raduha, from Slovenia, became the first woman contingent commander in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). She took charge of UNIFIL’s Slovenian Contingent on 22 May 2017. This is also her first deployment to a UN peacekeeping operation. 

She said she is “honoured and privileged” to be shouldering the “big responsibility.” 

“Because as a commander, regardless the gender, I need to bring all my soldiers safe home with some good and professional work left behind us,” said Major Raduha. “We will all give our best to implement UNIFIL’s mission in the area of operation and I will try to be the best role model as a commander and as a woman.”

As one of 40 troop-contributing countries of UNIFIL, Slovenia currently has 15 peacekeepers with the Mission. 

UNIFIL Gender Advisor, Afaf Omer, said that the deployment of a woman as a commander to a UN peacekeeping operation is “very encouraging” and this will be beneficial to the women in the local communities. 

“This certainly will give women in the communities a role model to look up to,” said Ms. Omer, adding that Major Raduha could serve as a role model for other UNIFIL peacekeepers as well. 

Major Raduha’s previous overseas deployment was to Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2007 as Human Intelligence Officer with European Union Force Althea.