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Brazilian Officer Returns To Brazil With Unprecedented UN Award

first_imgBy Taciana Moury / Diálogo August 21, 2019 In early July 2019, the officer was assigned to the Almirante Sylvio de Camargo Training Center, in Rio de Janeiro, and will be working at the Naval Peacekeeping Operations School, which trains MB service members for UN peacekeeping operations or MB international commitments.UN Secretary-General António Guterres presented Lt. Cmdr. Márcia with the award on March 29, 2019, for serving as military gender advisor in the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA, in French). The officer visited the Central African Republic (CAR) from April 2018 to April 2019.In an interview with Diálogo, Lt. Cmdr. Márcia attributed the award to her dedication to the work carried out in MINUSCA. “It was a personal battle. I had never dedicated myself to anything as much as I did to protecting the civilians,” she said. “There was no better way to close the cycle of my mission in CAR. It’s very good to be recognized, and to have it done on an international level is beyond my wildest dreams.” The activities were carried out closer to the local community and projects were developed to mitigate threats. “I believe that whenever service members are on the ground, we can avoid abuses. The patrol, preferably comprised of men and women, the engagement, and listening to the community are fundamental for the protection of civilians.”The small number of women working on MINUSCA was among the main challenges Lt. Cmdr. Márcia faced. “I had 3.7 percent women. The average for missions was 4 percent, including military observers, team, and troop workers. [It’s a] very small amount, when considering the importance of mixed patrols to get closer to women, especially those who have been victims of sexual violence,” she said. “Language was another obstacle to approaching the community. There were battalions that did not speak French, which is predominant in the region.”Despite the challenges, Lt. Cmdr. Márcia said the experience in a UN mission is unforgettable. “At each obstacle, I increased my strength to continue working toward helping people. I was the happiest I had ever been. I miss Africa. It’s part of me now, part of my history,” she concluded. United Nations Peacekeeping Ministerial: Uniformed Capabilities, Performance and Protection A main part of the work Lt. Cmdr. Márcia developed was to assess and understand the region’s more sensitive areas and the  locations of groups. The goal was to document characteristics of the terrain to be able to advise military commanders on the best troop positioning.“The gender advisor must be on the ground, with the locals and the contingent, not working from an office,” she said. “If I know about armed groups recruiting children in an area, I need to pay more attention to the kids’ routine, to understand how abuses occur and alert the troops to the need for intervention.” Lt. Cmdr. Márcia encouraged interaction with children during the mission. (Photo: United Nations)The officer also received the Victory Medal from the Brazilian Ministry of Defense, on April 5, 2019, which President Jair Bolsonaro presented. “This shows that, like the UN, Brazil recognizes the importance of gender equality and the protection of civilians,” she said.The goal of her mission was to apply gender perspectives within the military component, to avoid human rights violations. Until then, no such work had been performed in MINUSCA. “I created an action plan from scratch, from staffing to the engagement of locals.”According to Lt. Cmdr. Márcia, five steps were defined in the line of action: development of the workforce; service member training, which included visiting sectors and battalions to explain the importance of using the gender perspective on a day-to-day basis; information exchanges; inclusion of gender perspective in documents and guidelines produced in the mission; and engagement and deployment within communities. “It was a full cycle. It was gratifying to see the mixed teams of men and women working to protect the local population,” she said.last_img read more

Justin Upton reflects on a rollercoaster first full season with Angels

first_img Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter Upton, 31, said some of his 12 big league seasons have been like that, and he’s not sure why.Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.He also had no explanation for what has been a consistent area of struggle. Upton has hit .199 with a .657 OPS with runners in scoring position.“I can’t put a finger on that,” he said. “Every time I felt I was in a hitter’s count, a guy makes a great pitch or I mis-hit something. Things just didn’t go my way with guys in scoring position, but somehow I still drove in runs. It’s just one of those weird things.”Upton has 85 RBIs, which is tops on the team.Manager Mike Scioscia said there was some bad luck involved with Upton’s issues with runners in scoring position. “He hit some balls hard (that were caught),” Scioscia said. “He probably hasn’t been as productive as he’s been in the past in that regard, but he’s had a great season.”Upton was the Angels cleanup hitter when the season began, expected to bat between Mike Trout and Albert Pujols. As the year developed, he will end up as the primary No. 5 hitter, behind Trout and Shohei Ohtani. When Pujols is back next year, it seems likely he would hit behind Upton, which could be fifth or sixth, depending on whether Trout is No. 2 or No. 3.“I guess that’s the plan,” Upton said of having all four hitters healthy in the middle of the lineup. “It didn’t work out for us. Hopefully, next year is a little different.”Upton has four years left on the contract extension he signed last year, getting an extra year on his deal in exchange for passing on his opt-out. Upton is due to make $18 million next year, and $90 million over the next four years.He seems to have no regrets about returning to the Angels instead of becoming a free agent.“This is a great clubhouse,” he said. “We had injuries and didn’t play as well as we wanted to, but people are going to come in prepared again next year to chase our goal of getting to the postseason. I enjoyed the season as much as you could. I enjoy the guys. I enjoy the atmosphere. I’m looking forward to next year.”ALSOMatt Shoemaker will start the season finale on Sunday, regardless of whether the game has any playoff implications for the Oakland A’s. Scioscia had a choice of Shoemaker, Felix Peña or even a crew of relievers. He opted against Peña because he’s already thrown 126 innings between the minors and majors, about double what he threw last year as a reliever in the Cubs’ system. Peña finishes his season with a 4.18 ERA, including 4.00 in his 17 starts. Scioscia said Peña “had a great run for us. He learned a lot.”UP NEXTAngels (LHP Tyler Skaggs, 8-9, 3.91) vs. A’s (TBA), Saturday, 6 p.m., Fox Sports West, KLAA (830 AM)Related Articles Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield ANAHEIM — Although Justin Upton will end his season with his accustomed numbers, he would have preferred a smoother ride.“I typically like to do it in a different fashion than I did, but that’s how things were,” the Angels outfielder said with a shrug.Upton is hitting .259 with 30 home runs and an .813 OPS after Friday’s game. His career average is .268 with 28 homers a season and an OPS of .826.Upton, however, got to those numbers in a turbulent manner. He had a .657 OPS in his first 29 games, followed by a .965 mark over his next 33 games, a .639 over his next 28 games, and then a 1.000 for 32 games. Since coming back from a stint on the disabled list with a finger laceration, he has a .722 mark over his last 21 games. Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more