Developed integration at SWEDINT

Everyday life in a peace supporting operation, whether you are serving there as a civilian, military or police, poses a constant challenge to interpret and understand different cultures. Often, however, we limit ourselves to only try to understand the culture of the country or region that the peace supporting operation is conducted in. But the concept of “different cultures” also contains the different cultures housed in a civilian, police or military organization. The three different subcomponents of a UN-led effort also consists of individuals from different parts of the world, which further reinforces the need to understand the people and organizations that cooperation is conducted with on a daily basis during a mission. SWEDINT has during the last year further enhanced the cooperation with Swedish police and various civilian organizations contributing to peace supporting efforts in UN-lead missions.

Capt. Phong Derrick UNSOC, Ms Ujvara Ponari UNCIVSOC, Supt. Claude Tembo UNPCC in discussions at the INSTEX (Integrated Staff Exercise). Photo: Thorsten Hagelberg/SWEDINT

United Nations Staff Officer Course (UNSOC) is conducted at SWEDINT twice a year together with the civilian United Nations Civilian Staff Officer Course. (UNCIVSOC)and the police United Nations Police Commander Course (UNPCC) These three courses have distinctive course objectives, but also the overall common objective to show the importance of integration between civilian, military and police functions to achieve success in a UN-led peace supporting operation. The participants in these three courses come from a variety of countries around the world, thus we also meet the challenge of different cultures within each component. Previously a Command Post Exercise (CPX) was conducted jointly during the last week of the three courses. The CPX is now replaced by an Integrated Staff Exercise (INSTEX) where focus is shifted from the tactical to the strategic level in an UN-led mission. The instructors and mentors from the three different courses that lead the INSTEX ensure that cooperation and coordination of available civilian, police and military resources must be made in order to be able to solve complex tasks. Some examples of tasks the participants face during the INSTEX are demobilization of various armed groups, preparation for an election, protection of civilians and the arrest of local warlords that in various ways disturb the peace process. In parallel with these tasks each course also conducts course-specific training. For the military UNSOC staff planning is conducted on the results of the coordination and cooperationso that order and guidelinescan be produced to the fictivesubordinate units.

The newly developed INSTEX consider the police and civilian components need of integration to a greater extent of than the previous CPX.Thenew INSTEX is also following the new instructions and guidelines given by the UN, through the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), to training centresregarding enhanced need of integration and general preparation prior to a mission for staff personnel. Through this collaboration, which combines all three components needs, SWEDINT and its partners are the first to offer a unique training for personnel that are to be deployedto an UN-led peacekeeping operation.

LtCol Jerker Sundström, Chief Academics, SWEDINT