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Monday, 16 September 2019
Page: 3121

Mr CONAGHAN (Cowper) (16:29): I was honoured to represent the Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel last Saturday, 14 September, at the Australian Peacekeeping Memorial for National Peacekeeper and Peacemaker Day. Australia has a very proud tradition of taking part in peacekeeping operations. That's more than 70 years of dedicated service to the international community. An estimated 65,000 Australian men and women have been involved in more than 50 peacekeeping operations worldwide. They have often served in hostile and volatile environments, including operations in Kashmir, Cyprus, the Middle East, East Timor, Cambodia, Rwanda and Bougainville. In fact, last week we marked the 20th anniversary of the INTERFET mission, the peacekeeping task force that came to Timor-Leste to address the humanitarian and security crisis from 1999 to 2000. The international community is thankful for the valuable service of our peacekeepers. I thank all those personnel currently on deployment, all those who've served on peacekeeping operations and the families that support them, including many in the electorate of Cowper. The Peacekeeping Memorial is rightfully placed on Anzac Parade alongside the memorials honouring Australia's contribution in wars and conflicts. It honours Australia's contribution to international peacekeeping missions since the first UN deployment in 1947 and the memory of those Australians who have died in the service of our country. Lest we forget.