Air Force Members Honoured By Netherlands Government

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26th May 2010, 04:19pm - Views: 423

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Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Support

Wednesday, 26 May 2010


Air Force members honoured by Netherlands Government

Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Support, Dr Mike Kelly, today attended a

special ceremony during which the Netherlands Government honoured Royal

Australian Air Force Health Services personnel for their work in Afghanistan.

13 Air Force members received the Netherlands Peace-keeping Operations

Commemorative Medal during the ceremony in Canberra. The members were

recognised for their provision of Combat Health Support for the NATO-led

International Security Assistance Force, alongside their Dutch counterparts,

during their deployment to Tarin Kowt in southern Afghanistan in 2008. 

Major General Simon Van Groningen, Commandant of the Netherlands

Defence Academy, presented the medals, which acknowledged the invaluable

contribution by the Air Force team under difficult and dangerous


The team, comprised specialist medical personnel including orthopaedic and

general surgeons, nurses and intensive care medical assistants, provided

crucial health support to coalition forces and local Afghans treated at the ISAF

medical facility in Tarin Kowt. 

“This was a very demanding deployment. The RAAF health personnel showed

great dedication and professionalism in treating severe injuries”, Dr Kelly said. 

“Their contribution to the mission in Afghanistan was outstanding. The medical

staff worked around the clock alongside Dutch and other coalition military

health professionals.  They not only saved lives but their contribution will have

a lasting positive effect in the local community.”

Operation SLIPPER is Australia’s military contribution to the international

campaign against terrorism, countering piracy in the Gulf of Aden, and

maritime security in the Middle East Area of Operations. Australian forces

contribute to the NATO led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in

Afghanistan, which seeks to bring security, stability and prosperity to

Afghanistan and aims at preventing the country from becoming a safe haven

for international terrorists.

Media contacts:

Elyse Gatt (Dr Mike Kelly):

02 6277 4840 or 0437 502 246

Defence Media Liaison:

02 6127 1999 or 0408 498 664

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