UN suspends deployment and rotation of peacekeeping troops worldwide due to coronavirus pandemic

The United Nations has ordered its military and police forces across the globe to suspend rotation in an effort to mitigate the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

The suspension will stay in effect until June 30, the spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General, Stephane Dujarric, told reporters on Tuesday.

“There is no movement of troops, coming in or out… A few, limited exceptions may be considered,” Dujarric told CBS News.

The spokesperson explained that the order applies not only to formed military and police units, but to individual officers as well.

The UN currently has 13 active peacekeeping missions in Africa, the Middle East, Cyprus, Kosovo, and Kashmir.

Armies in different countries have been struggling to keep their personnel from being infected. Last month, the US Navy isolated the entire crew of aircraft carrier USS ‘Theodore Roosevelt’ off Guam after more than 100 sailors tested positive for Covid-19.

In late March, Dutch combat submarine HNLMS ‘Dolfijn’ had to cut short its North Sea training mission when several crew members became infected with the novel coronavirus.

The pandemic has led NATO to cancel or scale down several of its regular military drills, including the major US-led ‘Defender Europe 20’ exercise, which was severely curtailed in size and scope.