Greeting from General Timo Kivinen to Peacekeepers

Defence Forces 23.12.2019 8.00
Press release

Greeting from General Timo Kivinen to Peacekeepers on Christmas 2019

Finnish peacekeepers,

This Christmas, 400 Finnish peacekeepers are serving on 10 different operations around the world. On crisis management operations, you demonstrate your skills, and thus strengthen the image of our defence capability. A Finn treats all parties of a crisis equally and justly, without aggravating the situation. Our approach is seen to be reliable, humane and meaningful.  Thanks to your work, our flag that you wear and carry is respected among the local people and among other crisis management forces.

You do a valuable job every day of the year, for the security of the area of operations and the livelihood of the people living there. In the demanding conditions, remember to take good care of yourselves and your fellow servicemembers. Prepare and train so that you are able to operate in demanding and unforeseen circumstances.

Spending Christmas and New Year on operations is a memorable experience. When your loved ones are far away, your best support on operations are your fellow servicemembers. During your service they have become close friends, to some maybe even lifelong friends. It is good to calm down and celebrate Christmas and New Year with your own section, office, fireteam or team.

Also, the most valuable people in your lives – your family, loved ones, relatives and friends – deserve a thank you. Their emotional support is important for all. Right now, they are carrying the responsibilities for practical matters back home that you normally share with them. That is why I want to extend my warmest gratitude to your loved ones back home.

Peacekeepers, I thank you for the past year and for the valuable contribution that you have made for the common good. I wish you and your loved ones a peaceful Christmas and a successful year 2020.


Commander of the Finnish Defence Forces
General Timo Kivinen