The UN Owes Ethiopia $29M For Peacekeeping Missions, In Part Due To Delayed US Payments

The UN Owes Ethiopia $29M For Peacekeeping Missions, In Part Due To Delayed US Payments

The United Nations owes Ethiopia $29 million for the troops the country provides in global peacekeeping missions, but a failure from the U.S. to pay its contributions to the U.N. on time has delayed payments to Ethiopia and others.

Ethiopia is the nation the U.N. owes the most money to, with $29 million in troop contributions currently outstanding, according to Ozy.

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Every U.N. member state is contributes to the organization’s peacekeeping finances, with amounts calculated based on a complex formula that takes into account the size of a country’s economy and its per capita GDP.

The U.S. is therefore expected to pay 28 percent of the U.N.’s peacekeeping budget, which is used to pay nations that provide peacekeeping troops. The money is spent on stipends for soldiers and for equipment that a country brings to a conflict zone.

African nations provide nearly half of peacekeepers deployed worldwide, including almost two thirds of all women peacekeepers, and the majority of U.N. police officers, according to DefenceWeb.

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peacekeeping missions
United Nations soldiers are involved in peacekeeping missions across Africa. Photo – AP – Rebecca Blackwell

The U.N.’s financial data from September, 2018, reveals that the New York-based body owes 76 countries a total of $221 million for their troop contributions in peacekeeping missions.

The U.S. currently owes the U.N. over $1 billion in peacekeeping-budget contributions out of a total of $2.5 billion that countries owe to the organization.

African troops crucial to peacekeeping missions

Over 13 percent of the outstanding peacekeeping troop compensation is owed to Ethiopia, the country with the most active peacekeeping troops deployed on behalf of the U.N., with 8,333 peacekeepers from the East African country involved in active duty during October 2018, according to the U.N.’s peacekeeping records.

By comparison, the same records show that the U.S. currently provides 49 peacekeeping troops, while France contributes 739 soldiers and the U.K. 662.

Developing countries such as Ethiopia are fundamental to efforts by the U.N. in facilitating the transition of nations from conflict to peace, with all of the top 30 troop-providing countries, aside from Italy, considered developing nations.

There are 14 ongoing U.N. peacekeeping missions at the moment, with seven of those involving Africa, including three in Ehiopia’s neighbouring countries, Sudan and South Sudan, according to the U.N..

Recently U.N. chief António Guterres spoke during a Security Council debate, explaining the need for peacekeeping missions in Africa to be able to count on funding from the body’s international members.

“It is essential that African-led peace operations acting under the Security Council’s authority are provided with strong mandates and predictable, sustainable and flexible finance, including through U.N.-assessed contributions where appropriate,” Guterres said, according to AllAfrica.

New ambassador for the U.S.

Following former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley’s sudden resignation in October, U.S. President Donald Trump is on Friday expected to nominate State Department spokeswoman and former Fox TV news anchor Heather Nauert for the position at the global body, according to TheGuardian.

Haley will likely continue in the position until the end of the year, at which point her successor will step in.

Trump’s fascination with American cable news, and in particular with Fox Cable News Network, appears to be a driving force in his choice. The president often turns to the conservative network for policy advice rather than subject matter experts.

Trump previously chose John Bolton, a former UN ambassador who was a Fox contributor, as his national security adviser and Bill Shine, a former Fox co-president as his deputy White House chief of staff in charge of communications, according to the New York Times.