UNIFIL pays tribute to fallen Spanish peacekeeper
UNIFIL and the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) today paid their last tribute to a Spanish peacekeeper who lost his life yesterday morning while serving for peace in south Lebanon.
UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Stefano Del Col led a memorial ceremony in the Beirut airport before the mortal remains of First Sergeant Juan Ardura Santa Engracia were flown back home in Spain.
“Today, as we mourn his loss, we shall thank Juan Ardura’s family and his country, for they gave us the privilege to serve with him and for their contribution to our joint effort,” said the UNIFIL head. “UNIFIL acts impartially and independently to maintain peace, and Juan Ardura proudly contributed to this.”
He also called on “everyone to keep working with renewed determination, loyalty and enthusiasm, shaping the essential path to lasting peace for Lebanon.”
During the ceremony, Major General Del Col and LAF representative Colonel Fakhri Chkeir awarded the fallen UNIFIL peacekeeper with UN and Lebanese medals respectively.
A native of Madrid, 42-year-old Engracia, the father of a daughter, was deployed to UNIFIL on 28 May 2019. During his three months in UNIFIL, he served as a political-military analyst at the Mission’s Sector East Headquarters.
He died of medical conditions