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Kiwi Helicopter Detachment Head To Timor-Leste

24 April 2008

Kiwi Helicopter Detachment Head To Timor-Leste

It will be an ANZAC Day to remember for the families of the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel departing from Ohakea for three months in Timor-Leste.

The eleven personnel, drawn mainly from Number 3 Squadron, Royal New Zealand Air Force, will join 19 comrades who have already arrived in theatre. The C-130 Hercules transporting them to Timor-Leste will also be carrying a replacement Iroquois.

The Iroquois being replaced has flown 526 hours in Timor-Leste and, with 3 Squadron's mission now extended to October 2008, the helicopter is due to return to New Zealand for servicing as it cannot be completed in theatre.

The Kiwi personnel will work alongside the Australian Defence Force air assets and the 150 NZDF infantry and military observers, conducting personnel movement, aero medical evacuation and air logistic support.

New Zealand has contributed to various United Nations and peacekeeping efforts in Timor-Leste since 1999. The New Zealand Defence Force's commitment to Timor-Leste at present consists of more than 170 Defence personnel and two helicopters serving with the Combined Joint Task Force, as well as two Military Liaison Officers serving with the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) and two advisors to the Timor-Leste Defence Force (F-FDTL).

ENDS

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