Afghanistan

NZDF welcomes Singaporeans to Afghanistan

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Dental services will soon be available at Bamyan Hospital in Afghanistan, due to the deployment of a five-man medical team from the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) which joined the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team (NZPRT) in Bamyan province almost two weeks ago.

The SAF are residing at the New Zealand base while they set up and train local staff to run a dental clinic designed to provide comprehensive dental health to the people of Bamyan.

The Singaporean personnel are experiencing the full extent of Kiwi hospitality with provision of logistics, specialist knowledge and information and administration support which will help them achieve their mission in Afghanistan.

Commander Joint Forces New Zealand Rear Admiral Jack Steer, says the partnership between the New Zealand and Singaporean Armed Forces in Afghanistan is indicative of the collaborative nature of operations in the region.

"The New Zealand Defence Force is once again proud to be associated with the Singapore Armed Forces in a humanitarian assistance and reconstruction operation. We very much look forward to working together in assisting the people of Afghanistan to receive the support and services they need to rebuild their nation."

"The commitment of military forces by both of our Governments is just part of our combined efforts to bring peace and stability to this troubled nation."

The SAF and NZDF know each other well and have previously deployed together in a UN mission in East Timor. The NZDF has operated in Bamyan Province since 2003 and personnel have built up a strong foundation of trust with the local community and provincial government.

There are 122 New Zealand personnel involved in the NZPRT in Afghanistan today. Currently 675 New Zealand Defence Force personnel are deployed on 19 operations, UN missions and defence exercises around the world.

For further information please contact Captain Rachel Riley, Defence Public Relations, on 04 529 6031 or 021 806 926.