STF to gain UN deployment

Published : 11:09 am  February 3, 2017 | No comments so far |  |  (313) reads | 

By Sandun A Jayasekera 
The government is for the first time to train and deploy STF personnel of the Sri Lanka Police for peace keeping operations of the UN with the objective to increase foreign exchange received by Sri Lanka and gaining international recognition for the STF.  

DM_20170203_A001-49The Cabinet gave the nod this week to a memo submitted by Law and Order and Southern Development Minister Sagala Ratnayaka to procure small arms, ammunition and military, medical and other equipment for Special Task Force (STF) troops to be attached to the Formed Police Unit (FPU) for UN Peacekeeping Operations to the tune of Rs. 868 million.   

The total financial package for this project is Rs. 1.59 billion and the estimated cost for the STF troops deployment will be reimbursed by the UN under the “Wet Lease Reimbursement System” and 20% of the remuneration that will be paid to deployed troops is planned to be provided to the Sri Lanka government.   

Accordingly, the Sri Lanka Police will procure a Water Treatment Plant and Equipment, Logistic Vehicles and Equipment, Generators, Containers and Refrigerators, Small Arms, Infantry Fighting Vehicles ((lFVs), Communication Equipment and Medical Equipment at a cost of Rs. 864 million.   

Minister Ratnayaka told the cabinet in his memo that the STF and Sri Lanka Police (SLP) which is under the purview of his Ministry has pledged to the United Nations to deploy officers for UN Peace keeping operations through Sri Lanka’s permanent representative to the UN.   

Under the project, Sri Lanka will deploy trained STF personnel numbering 140 to 200 for the Formed Police Unit and 140 personnel for the Police Guard Unit (PGU) and 40 personnel for the SWAT Team.   

As informed by the United Nations, the STF has to first deploy its troops under the Formed Police Unit (FPU) category before making deployments under other categories. Accordingly, the STF has trained 178 officers to be deployed under the FPU category, he said.   
Minister Ratnayaka told cabinet that the purpose of the project was to increase foreign exchange received by Sri Lanka through deployment of a Formed Police Unit (EPU) for the UN by the STF of Sri Lanka Police.   

It is also expected to provide additional income for troops who are deployed in this unit and thereby uplift their living standards and economic strengths.