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UN Asks Russia for More Peacekeepers

NEW YORK — Russia has been asked to increase the level of staff it commits to UN peacekeeping missions around the world, Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev said after meeting with the UN undersecretary general for political affairs in New York.

"Our peacekeepers are in great demand. We have been asked to increase the number of peacekeepers involved in UN peacekeeping operations," Kolokoltsev told journalists after the meeting with the UN's Jeffrey Feltman.

Kolokoltsev noted that about 80 Russian police officers are currently serving with eight UN peacekeeping operations. He stressed that his meeting with the UN covered a wide range of issues, such as strengthening cooperation on law enforcement, information security and combating international drugs trafficking.

He also said that the Interior Ministry is willing to share its "unique" experience with UN member states by helping train peacekeepers.

Last week, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visited the international center in Domodedovo, outside Moscow, where peacekeepers are trained. Some 80 peacekeeping specialists undergo training there each year.

During his visit to the UN, Kolokoltsev is meeting with a number of law enforcement officials to discuss crime and security concerns ranging from drunk driving to terrorism.

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