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Kiwi Troops head home from Afghanistan

New Zealand Defence Force

Te Ope Kaatua O Aotearoa

Media advisory

12 December, 2005

Kiwi Troops head home from Afghanistan

One hundred and twenty one New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will be home for Christmas, after completing a six-month tour of duty in Afghanistan.

The members of the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team (NZPRT) will return home on Wednesday December 14.

Their tour ended today following a handover with the incoming New Zealand contingent at Kiwi Base in Bamyan.

Major General Lou Gardiner, Commander Joint Forces New Zealand says NZDF personnel in Afghanistan can be proud of their contribution.

“The NZPRT works closely with locals and government to further progress development in Bamyan in an effort to continue to develop Bamyan as a prosperous and self-sustaining province. At the time of their departure – projects completed or underway range from bridge construction and repairs to local infrastructure, training the Afghan National Police, to water and well projects, English language classes and the construction and supply of medical and hospital facilities,” said Major General Gardiner.

“Also we acknowledge the families of our returning personnel, they too have earned our respect for their contribution and support to the men and women who deploy overseas each year,” he said.

The Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing 757 with the contingent on board is due to touch down at 4:45 pm at Christchurch International Airport - it will be met by senior NZDF staff and VIPs.

Programme:

4:45 pm Air Force B757 arrives Christchurch

O/c Official reception in ‘Arrivals Hall’

O/c Clear Customs/MAF

6:45 pm Air Force B757 (northbound pers) departs for

Wellington/Ohakea/Whenuapai

ENDS


NZ PRT

The New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team has been in Afghanistan since September 2003.

The NZPRT is designed to assist the Afghan Transitional Government extend its influence beyond Kabul, and promote reconstruction in Bamyan and assess civil, political and military reform efforts through community involvement and patrols.

The seventh NZPRT will continue to work closely with local government to further progress development in Bamyan in an effort to continue to develop Bamyan as a prosperous and self-sustaining province.

For further information please visit: http://www.nzdf.mil.nz/operations/deployments/default.htm

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