Medals for MINUSMA’s Egyptian convoy specialists

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Tangible recognition for the effort expended by the 110-strong 3rd Egyptian Combat Convoy Company came in the form of the United Nations (UN) medal awarded recently.

The Egyptians have been part of MINUSMA, the UN mission in Mali, since 2018 and proudly point to 43 successful logistic convoys delivering, among others, medical aid and rations to other MINUSMA blue helmets across the landlocked west African country.

Proof of the dangers involved in the company’s essential support work was the loss of five soldiers to improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in the 2022 calendar year. Acknowledging the danger posed by IEDs MINUSMA force commander Lieutenant General Cornelis Matthijssen said 2022 was a challenging year in a high IED-threat environment for all MINUSMA units.

“As a combat convoy company you faced a difficult and important task. You facilitated movement of convoys and the logistics toward our colleagues in remote camps. You ensure their materials, their fuel, their food, their livelihoods and that makes you indispensable,” Matthijssen said.

Despite the obstacles, the company showed dedication to overcome them and accomplish its mission. It implemented intensive training programmes to improve convoy movement techniques to protect the lives of fellow peacekeepers serving in Mali.

Over the last few months, the company enhanced its IED search and detect capabilities and developed careful maintenance schedules for their vehicles. This was done to ensure they are able to continue working in service of peace and apply best practices to the benefit of the force and the mission a MINUSMA statement said.

The UN medal is an international decoration awarded by the world body to various world countries’ soldiers and police for participation in joint international military and police operations such as peacekeeping, humanitarian efforts and disaster relief.