This year Rapid Trident attracted approximately 1,300 soldiers and officers from 19 countries, including Great Britain, Armenia, Canada, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Denmark, Estonia, Georgia, Germany, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Sweden, and Turkey. The largest military contingent was from Ukraine - more than 600 Ukrainian participants joined the exercise. Ukraine's partners from the U.S. delegated 124 peacekeepers.
"Normally in the States I would work with only U.S. forces, while here in Europe, I work with Ukraine and other countries, doing the same kind of missions, which gives us an opportunity to broaden our training and our knowledge," said Captain Jeffrey B. Cherry, who came to Ukraine for the second time to attend the event.
"Ukrainian peacekeepers are among the top ten leading nations who conduct peacemaking operations internationally," reckoned Colonel Ihor Hordiychuk, Head of Ukrainian International Military Cooperation Department.
The history of Ukrainian peacekeeping began in July 1992, when the Ukrainian contingent first took part in the UN peacekeeping operations at the conflict zones of the former Yugoslavia. Since 1992, approximately 37,000 Ukrainian military participated in international peacekeeping missions in Europe, Middle East, Africa, and in Central American Guatemala. In its peacekeeping initiatives the country cooperates with such international organizations as the United Nations, NATO, and others.
As of June 2013, Ukraine participated in seven UN peacekeeping operations - in Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Kosovo, Liberia, South Sudan and Sudan's Abyei - out of 16, carried out by the international organization at the moment, according to un.org. Ukraine provides military and police personnel for the missions, as well as equipment and means of transportation, including helicopters.