Trump’s budget cuts would make UN peacekeeping ‘impossible’
The blue-helmeted peacekeeping forces are currently running 16 missions worldwide
The United Nations has warned that President Donald Trump’s plans to cut contributions to peacekeeping will make such work “impossible”.
The US administration signalled heavy cuts to UN operations, in its budget proposals released on Tuesday.
The US foots more than a quarter of the UN’s $7.9bn (£6.1bn) peacekeeping bill.
A spokesman for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said the organisation was willing to discuss how peacekeeping could be made more cost-effective.
Mr Trump’s budget proposal declares new “attention on the appropriate US share of international spending at the United Nations”.
The document does not provide a detailed breakdown, but Reuters news agency reports the drop in funding for the operations could amount to $1bn.
The spokesman said the UN was studying Mr Trump’s plan. “The figures presented would simply make it impossible for the UN to continue all of its essential work advancing peace, development, human rights and humanitarian assistance,” he said.
The BBC’s Nick Bryant at the UN says such a warning from the organisation is unusually blunt.
The global losers of Trump’s budget
The US provides 28.5% of the United Nations peacekeeping budget – almost three times as much as the next-highest contributor, China.
While Mr Trump’s plan does not include details, the US is known to want to cap its contributions to a maximum of 25%.
There are currently 16 active peacekeeping operations, including Syria, South Sudan, and on the border of India and Pakistan.