Pakistani peacekeepers in Kosovo unpaid for 5 months
By Hameedullah Abid
ISLAMABAD: The fourth Pakistani contingent, a part of the United Nations peacekeeping force in Kosovo, has not been paid for five months due to delays by the UN agency office, sources told Daily Times on Monday.
They said the third contingent was paid for its nine-month service after it returned to Pakistan. Interior Ministry sources said 115 military officers went to Kosovo in April this year. They said the contingent, consisting of 30 officers each from the Punjab and Sindh Rangers and the NWFP Frontier Corps, 10 each from Balochistan Frontier Corps and the Pakistan Coastguards and five police officers from each of the four provinces, is not being paid monthly like contingents from other countries serving in the Balkan state.
An Interior Ministry officer said, “The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signed between the UN and Pakistan, makes no provision for the method of payment. Our military adviser to the UN mission in New York and the Ministry of Interior coordinate with the UN authorities for payments to Pakistani peacekeeping forces.”
He said the delay was caused by the UN authorities concerned who did not transfer the money for the Pakistani forces to the State Bank of Pakistan on time. “So far we have received salaries for the contingents serving till December 2002. We have taken up the matter with the UN through our military adviser to the UN mission in New York. He informed us that the UN member countries are not paying their contributions on time which was causing the delay in the payment of salaries,” the source said. He added that Pakistan was considering a proposal to amend the MoU signed with the UN.