The UN Peacekeeping Forces (often named “Blue Helmets”) were established in New York in 1948 to maintain or re-establish peace in areas of domestic or international armed conflicts.
Their first mission was monitoring the armistice during the war between Israel and Arab states in 1948. Since then, the UN Peacekeeping Forces took part in over 60 missions all over the world; 15 peacekeeping operations are still running.
The UN peace missions are established by way of a resolution of the Security Council which defines the mission mandate and size. The Security Council also supervises the course of peace operations. The peace missions may only be organised when main parties to a conflict accept the presence of UN peacekeepers.
The International Day of the United Nations Peacekeepers is celebrated on 29 May.