New Kiwi Contingent for Solomon Islands
Another 43 mostly Territorial Force (TF) personnel will head to the Solomon Islands on Sunday for a four month tour of duty.
The contingent, drawn largely from the 4th Otago Southland and 2nd Canterbury Nelson Marlborough West Coast Battalions, will be the eleventh rotation to support the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI).
Operations such as RAMSI offer Reserve members of the Army the opportunity to take on the challenges that you would experience full-time in the Army and the civilian skills members bring are often invaluable when working with the local population.
The contingent will be led by Major Stuart Brown initially, before he hands over to Major Ian Piercy early next year.
The Kiwis will carry out patrols, liaise with locals, provide assistance to police and help with external observation at Rove Prison.
The contingent will be farewelled by Commander Joint Forces New Zealand Air Vice Marshal Peter Stockwell.
Media are invited to attend.
When: 8.30am, Sunday 22 November 2009
Where: Royal New Zealand Air Force Harewood Terminal, Christchurch
What: Departure of 43 personnel for a four month tour of duty in the Solomon Islands.
Media wishing to attend the departure must register with Nicole Munro-Johnson, 021 569 148, before noon on Saturday 21 November to ensure access is available. Photo identification will be required on the day.
The Territorial Force makes up a quarter of NZ Army’s personnel, and are a vital part of operations abroad. Territorial soldiers and officers have been active on New Zealand peacekeeping missions to Lebanon, Sinai, East Timor, Bosnia, Sierra Leone, Bougainville, Afghanistan, Iraq and the Solomon Islands.
Currently 848 New Zealand Defence Force personnel are deployed on 14 operations, UN missions and defence exercises around the world.