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A chance for New Zealand to spread goodwill overse

A chance for New Zealand to spread goodwill overseas

Minister of Defence Mark Burton is inviting the New Zealand public to send messages of goodwill and Christmas cheer to the more than 210 New Zealand service men and women deployed overseas.

“We have more than 210 personnel serving on 17 missions around the world. These men and women will be away from their homes and loved ones during the Christmas period—traditionally a time to be with family and friends.

“Our people are serving in some of the harshest environments in the world. I invite all New Zealanders, many of whom will be enjoying a leisurely summer holiday on the beach, to let our service men and women know you are thinking of them.

“Our military personnel overseas have had a long and difficult year, including some who are serving in countries where they are at real risk. And while there are many who have just returned from East Timor to a welcome period of leave during the Christmas period, there are a considerable number who will have to remain away from home.

“Sending Christmas messages of good will to our sailors, soldiers and air men and women on duty around world is a simple way to show how much we appreciate their efforts.

”We are fortunate to be represented overseas by the professional, committed and skilled personnel of the New Zealand Defence Force. They are held in high regard by communities in countries such as Afghanistan, the Balkans, and Bougainville—and of course, the North Arabian sea where HMNZS Te Kaha will be on duty.

“I extend my best wishes to them all, and invite all New Zealanders to send their own personal message to our service men and women.”

Messages can be e mailed to “messages@nzdf.mil.nz” or faxed on one page to 0064 4 406 0290 before December 12, 2002.

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