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Minister for Defence farewells troops due to deploy to Middle East.



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SENATOR JOHN FAULKNER Minister for Defence

www.defence.gov.au

Friday, 17 July 2009 009/2009

MINISTER FOR DEFENCE FAREWELLS TROOPS DUE TO DEPLOY TO MIDDLE EAST

The Minister for Defence, Senator John Faulkner today attended the ADF Force Support Unit 2 Farewell Parade at the 1st Royal Australian Regiment parade ground in Townsville. The role of the Force Support Unit is to provide logistics support to all operational nodes in the Middle East, with its main focus on supporting operations in Afghanistan. Force Support Unit 2 will deploy later this month for an eight month rotation.

“I have recently returned from a visit to Afghanistan and can personally vouch for the important role you will play in providing support throughout the Middle East. Our troops there are operating in arduous and dangerous conditions and the contribution you make to supporting and sustaining them is pivotal to our success,” Senator Faulkner said.

Accompanied by the Chief of Joint Operations, Lieutenant General Mark Evans, Senator Faulkner visited the airmen and women of the Royal Australian Air Force’s 38 Squadron and discussed the phase-out of the squadron’s Caribou work-horse in December this year, as well as meeting with the Army’s aviators, engineers and support personnel of the 5th Aviation Regiment.

“I continue to be impressed with the spirit and work ethic of the personnel of the Australian Defence Force. ADF units based in Townsville make a significant commitment to operations in Timor and the Middle East, and our Defence personnel continue to apply themselves to the task and rise to the challenges that are presented to them,” Senator Faulkner said.

Further information regarding Defence facilities and units in Townville are available at:

http://www.airforce.gov.au/bases/townsville.aspx, and

http://www.defence.gov.au/Army/hq3bde/

Images will be available this afternoon on the Defence website at:

www.defence.gov.au

Media contacts: Ashley Hogan (John Faulkner): 02 6277 7600 or 0418 162 973 Defence Media Liaison: 02 6265 3343 or 0408 498 664