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PKO Overview

International Forces and UN PKO in East Timor

On August 30, 1999, a UN-mandated referendum for independence in East Timor was held, in which 78.5 percent of the electorate opted for independence. However, militias who opposed East Timor's independence caused devastating violence. Accordingly, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution to grant installation of the "International Forces in East Timor (INTERFET)," and the UN Secretary General together with the government of Australia officially requested the ROK government's participation. In addition, the Indonesian government agreed to the deployment of the multinational forces and actively requested the participation of Asian nations including the ROK. To maintain security and restore order, the ROK government formed the 419-member Evergreen Unit, composed of 201 infantry troops and support elements such as transportation, supply, communications, and medical personnel. Since the Evergreen Unit initiated operations on October 22, 1999 in Lospalos, East Timor, Korean Battallion moved to Oeucci Enclave in Feb 2002. Currently, 8th contingent with 260 soldiers is working successfully in Oecussi, East Timor.

Activities of the Korean Medical Unit in Western Sahara

The Korean medical unit currently participating in the "UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO)" started its mission in September 1994, when the very first delegation was dispatched from Korea. As of June 2002, 20 Koreans from the twelfth delegation are conducting the mission. The Korean medical unit is the sole unit within MINSURO and performs the following duties: basic medical support to MINURSO personnel; evacuating severely injured or sick patients to larger hospitals; conducting 24 hour standby for emergency patient treatment; disinfecting the MINURSO Headquarters and inspecting both water and food hygiene. Our personnel have proudly provided faithful medical care to nearly 35,000 UN personnel for the past eight years.

Military Observer Activities

As of August 2002 the ROK military has dispatched nine officers to the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) and five to the UN Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG) as military observers. Our dispatched officers serve under the supervision of the local command and perform such tasks as monitoring ceasefires, patrolling, inspection, report, and arbitration.

ROK Evergreen Unit in Somalia

The Evergreen unit (engineer battalion) to Somalia was the first-ever ROK military unit to take part in the UN-led peace keeping operations.
Since its commencement in June 30, 1993, the battalion consisted of 504 men (annually rotated) took part in repairing roads and assisting the residences of Somalia. During their deployment the Evergreen unit put in 2,700 men and 1,300 pieces of equipment into a construction effort to repair the road linking Balad and Zohar. Additionally, the ROK unit worked with the US troops to construct the bypass road from Balad to Afgoa.

ROK Engineer Battalion to Angola

The 549 troops of the ROK engineer unit deployed to Angola in October of 1995 received a lot of compliment for its efforts in successfully finishing the bridge construction, which was awarded to them by the UN, and for its active participation in the humanitarian relief operations.
Also during their deployment, the engineer unit contributed to the effectiveness of the UN operations by swiftly restoring 8 bridges in areas such as the Chipipa and two airfield in areas including Uambo.

Dasan / Dong-ui Unit in Afghanistan

On September 11, 2001, a round of terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington marked the beginning of the global war against terror. The U.S. swiftly deployed its troops to Afghanistan and after two months, the Taliban retreated out of the capital city Kabul. This necessiated the establishment of a transitional government, which took place on December 5, with Hamid Karzai as the acting leader. Since December 12, when the UN Secruity Council unanimously agreeded upon sending its International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) to Afghanistan, various operations have been carried out throughout the country.
The ROK military, to join the global war against terror and to strengthen its alliance with the U.S., deployed its troops to Afghanistan.As early as September 17, the South Korean President Kim Dae-Jung had already promised President Bush to support the U.S. initiative.Then on December 5, the deployment of troops - including the medical unit, the engineer battalion, and the air force transportation unit - was finalized with the consent of the Korean parliament.

Zaytun Division in Iraq

On March 20, 2003, the U.S. began its attack on Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq. A few months later, on September 4, the U.S. requested for support and participation from countries including South Korea. After a period of consideration, on December 23, the South Korean President finalized the decision to deploy troops to Iraq and active preparations began immediately. Then from September 3 to 20, 2004, the ROK dispatch unit landed in Arbil, Iraq under Operation "Pabalma", and till today is faithfully taking part in Arbil's reconstruction and in maintaining peace and order in the area. More information can be found in.

The Key unit for securing the stability of Lebanon, Dongmyung unit

Since July 2007, called upon by the UNSC, 1,800 personnel was dispatched under the name of Dongmyung unit to Southern Lebanon. They contributed greatly in achieving the stability in the region by conducting exemplary civil and peace-keeping operations such as reconnaissance & surveillance on the responsible area, gathering intelligence, building schools, and providing medical support.
Despite the severe political and religious disputes that caused military conflict and terror, Dongmyung unit perfectly executed its reconnaissance & surveillance mission which contributed in preventing terror activities for the last 3 years. Furthermore, they have not only enhanced the security of the units that were dispatched in the region but also gained descent trust with the locals through civil operations such as humanitarian assistance and establishing social infrastructures.
Dongmyung unit has not only successfully secured peace and stability in the region by devoted civil and military operations, but also the unit served as a cultural diplomat that demonstrated Korean culture to the locals.

Sowing hope in the land of desperation, Task Force Danbi

In order to give support on the reconstruction process in Haiti which was hit by one of the most severe earthquake in January 2010, UNSC passed the resolution 1908 to send MINUSTAH. The Korean government also responded to the request of UNSC and sent Task Force Danbi that consist of 240 personnel in February 2010.
Task Force Danbi is mainly composed of engineers followed by the medical team and security. Its main tasks were to rebuild public infrastructures, restore roads, provide civil operations and medical check-ups, which all contributed in giving hope to the disheartened Haitians. Despite the harsh environment, Task Force Danbi heightened national prestige and status of Korea in the international community along with receiving numerous compliments from the locals.

Revive of the 'Korean support' in Afghanistan

After the withdrawal of the Dongeui and Dasan unit from Afghanistan in Dec. 2007, the Republic of Korea which possess the 10th largest economy in the globe, dispatched security unit to the Afghanistan PRT team in February 25th, 2010 as a responsible member of the international community.
'The Afghanistan PRT Support Group' was meant to be dispatched 320 personnel(civil & police) in July 2010. There main role was to provide security to the PRT team in response to the potential terrorist threats by utilizing protective equipments such as MRAP and Helicopters.
The Support group not only contributed in stabilizing Afghanistan but also enhanced ROK-US alliance. Furthermore, through exchange & cooperation within the nations around the world, the support group created an opportunity to develop military operation system and doctrine as well as to expand defense industry markets for Korean industries.

Operating Standing PKO units to contribute to national interests

In order to fulfill the various request of deployment from UN, and conduct PKO activities that meet the national status of Korea, MND organized Standing PKO units that consist of 3,000 personnel and also established national level PKO center.
In Dec. 29th, 2009, the Congress passed a law that grants the 'participation of international PKO activities' in order to actively and quickly respond to the demands of global PKO activities.
As a response, the Army is focusing its efforts to organize standing units, develop education & training system, and recruit elite personnel. Furthermore, in order to increase the professionalism of PKO training, Army established Education Support Center and plans to increase infrastructures such as barracks and training field. Also, to meet the standards of various circumstances around the world, the center conduct high-level functional training and assess other feasible unit besides the standing unit for immediate response and deployment.

Compensate the noble sacrifice by reconstruction efforts

ROK Joint Support Group for the Philippines (Araw Unit) was established in Dec. 9th, 2013 in order to recover the damage that the typhoon 'Haiyan' caused. It is the first in history that the Araw: the unit consists of all service branches of the ROK Armed Forces of Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines, was sent upon the request of the Philippines.
Araw unit is focusing its efforts to recover the social infrastructures such as schools and hospitals. Also, they are conducting various community services such as providing medical support, vocational schools and Korean language schools to help out the victims of the disaster while spreading the positive image of Korea. Araw unit promises to do its best to give hope to the Filipinos.