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Defence Minister farewells Kiwi contingent

Hon Dr Wayne Mapp
Minister of Defence


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Media statement

Defence Minister farewells Kiwi contingent

Defence Minister, Dr Wayne Mapp and Associate Defence Minister Mrs Heather Roy, today joined family and friends farewelling 149 Service personnel deploying to Timor-Leste.

The contingent, drawn largely from the Army’s Linton-based 16 Field Regiment, flew out of the Ohakea Air Base this morning.

Dr Mapp said he was delighted their first official act as Minister and Associate Minister was to meet some of the Kiwi Service personnel who were working around the world advancing the cause of peace and security.

“The work of our Defence Force Personnel deployed on overseas missions is something that every New Zealander can be proud of. New Zealand has made a fantastic contribution to various United Nations and peace keeping efforts in Timor-Leste since 1999,” he said.

“I know the New Zealand personnel have a good relationship with the Timorese community and have been making a significant difference to the security situation in that country.

“There is an important role for New Zealand to be an active participant in mechanisms designed to reinforce peace and stability – especially in our Asia-Pacific region.

“I believe the high standards and levels of integrity that our Defence Force men and women conduct themselves with are a credit to all New Zealanders,” the Minister said.

ENDS

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