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Australian Troops Reinforce Ramsi

CPA 076/06 Thursday, 20 April 2006

AUSTRALIAN TROOPS REINFORCE RAMSI

Australian Troops are now on the ground in Honiara directly supporting the RAMSI Participating Police Force. Joint patrols commenced last night and will continue today.

The rapid deployment group, called the Ready Company Group (RCG), that deployed yesterday, is based on an infantry company of approximately 110 infantry soldiers drawn from the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, based in Townsville as part of the 3rd Brigade.

Since their arrival last night, they have been supporting the Royal Solomon Islands Police and the RAMSI Participating Police Force, conducting patrols in and around Honiara.

These soldiers are highly trained and able to react to a broad range of contingencies at short notice. Their ability to concentrate and deploy immediately yesterday is testimony to their readiness and professionalism.

They will reinforce the military component of RAMSI that consisted of about 60 personnel from Australia, New Zealand, Tonga and Papua New Guinea prior to this deployment.

Royal Australian Air Force aircraft have also provided support to the movement of Australians, and nationals of Australia's consular partners, to Townsville on return flights from Honiara.

The strengthened military presence will provide added support to police who are responsible for enforcing the rule of law in the Solomon Islands. It is important to remember that the military component acts in support of the RAMSI police.

The deployment of the Ready Company Group aims to ensure the ongoing success of RAMSI in improving law and order in the Solomon Islands. Australia remains determined to ensure that law and order established in the Solomon Islands is maintained.

ENDS


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