Major General Kristin Lund was the first female Force Commander in a United Nations peacekeeping operation. In this new GPS Policy Brief Lund reflects on her experiences in the field during deployment in Cyprus and describes how being the first female Force Commander allowed her greater access to both military and civilian populations.
"This year marks the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. In these 20 years, we have met some significant milestones. The Norwegian Defence Forces appointed their first female Flag Officer in 2002. In 2014, the UN took the important step to appoint its first female Force Commander. I was proud to take on that role and lead the military force of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP). In this policy brief, I reflect on my experiences in the field during my deployment in Cyprus and describe how being the first female Force Commander allowed me greater access to both military and civilian populations. My experience illustrates how gender diversity in the military can strengthen international peace operations."