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BRIGADIER GENERAL DAVIDSON F FORLEH VISITS UNITED NATIONS HEADQUARTERS TO ENHANCE ARMED FORCES OF LIBERIA COMMITMENT TO PEACEKEEPING

BARCLAY TRAINING CENTER, MONROVIA- 13  MAY 2024: On 29 April 2024, the Chief of Staff (COS) of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL), Brigadier General Davidson F. Forleh departed Liberia for a working visit to the United States of America. Amongst several important issues, the visit aims at exploring avenues that would enhance the AFL collaboration and corporation with the United Nations in an effort to obtain additional peacekeeping missions for the AFL. 

 

Upon arrival in the United States on 30 April 2024, Brigadier General Forleh was received by Liberia’s Defense Attaché to its Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York and the Liberia Embassy in Washington DC.

 

 

As part of his visit, Brigadier General Forleh paid a courtesy call at the Permanent Mission of Liberia to the United Nations Mission in New York on 2 May 2024. During a meeting with staff at the Permanent Mission, he expressed the unwavering intent of his visit which is to explore avenues of additional peacekeeping mission opportunities for the AFL. Brigadier General Forleh used the occasion to emphatically state the AFL’s commitment to playing an active role in peace support and peacekeeping operations globally.

 

 

He indicated that the presence of the AFL leadership in New York is to seek future peacekeeping missions which signifies Liberia’s dedication to fostering peace not only within our borders but also across the globe. Brigadier General Forleh highlighted the exemplary performance of the Liberian Contingent in United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) where the AFL earned commendations for its discipline, professionalism and operational effectiveness.

 

 

Additionally, Brigadier General Forleh conveyed sincere thanks and appreciation to the Ambassador of Liberia’s Permanent Mission to the UN, Her Excellency Sarah Safyn Fyneah for her awesome collaboration and corporation with AFL’s Defense Attaché, Colonel Daniel Holman. He revealed to Ambassador Fyneah that Colonel Holman will be replaced at the end of this year after more than three years of dedicated service. He stressed that the decision is a strategic move in line with rotational procedures of AFL personnel in both local and international deployments or missions.

 

 

In response, the Ambassador, Her Excellency Sarah Safyn Fyneah outlined her plans to enhance collaboration between the AFL and diplomatic fronts. She noted that this holistic approach will maximize Liberia’s influence and participation within the United Nations. Ambassador Fyneah further disclosed that the visit came at a time when Liberia will be contesting for a seat as a non- permanent member on the UN Security Council by 2025.

 

 

Brigadier General Forleh also visited the Headquarters of the United Nations where he met with the head of the Force Generation Service at the Office of Military Affairs, Department of Peace Operations (DPO). Colonel Bibhudatta Lenka, welcomed Brigade General Forleh and provided insights into the process of securing missions.

 

Colonel Lenka explained that countries seeking peacekeeping missions must make pledge(s) at the Ministerial Conference on Peacekeeping and member states must indicate their capabilities in terms of personnel and equipment. He noted that Liberia did not make a pledge during the last conference in Accra, Ghana in 2023 but also expressed optimism for the upcoming 2025 conference in Germany.

 

 

According to Colonel Lenka, Liberia will have the opportunity to make its pledge(s) for future United Nations peacekeeping missions during the 2025 conference. Colonel Lenka noted that this will be a crucial step for Liberia to once again demonstrate its commitment to global peace and security.

 

 

For his part, Brigadier General Forleh assured Colonel Lenka that Liberia will participate in the 2025 Ministerial Conference. He further indicated that the high command of the AFL will do everything possible to meet the requirements outlined by the DPO.

 

 

In other developments, Brigadier General Forleh had a visual conference on 9 May 2024 with the vender of the two armor personnel carriers (APC) purchased by the AFL in North Carolina, United States of America. Mr. Justin LeVassiur assured Brigadier General Forleh that modalities are being worked on for the APC to be shipped to Liberia as soon as possible. 

 

 

Brigadier General Forleh has series of meetings with private organizations to include First Baptist in New Jersey and the Forleh Foundation in Maryland, United States of America. The Forleh Foundation donated some dental equipment and five laptops to the AFL. Presenting the dental equipment and laptops to the Chief of Staff of the AFL on 13 May 2024, Madam Eva Oberly, President of the Forleh Foundation said the donation is the Foundation way of identifying with the gallant men of women of the AFL.  She said the donation came as a result of a request made by the General to the Foundation to assist the 14 Military Hospital and AFL school system. 

 

 

For her part, the founder of the Forleh Foundation Marjorie Duncan-Forleh said, “It is not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country”.  She assured Brigadier General Forleh that the Foundation will continue to identify with the AFL which is a “Force for Good”.  Madam Duncan-Forleh said dental equipment will be shipped to Liberia next month.

 

 

Receiving the items, the Chief of Staff of the AFL expressed gratitude to the Forleh Foundation for the donation. He said the donation will go a long way and will also assist the 14 Military Hospital in setting up a dental clinic.  Brigadier General Forleh indicated that the AFL looks forward to the Foundation for future assistance.

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