Today the Australian Defence Force officially assumed command of Combined Team – Uruzgan (CT‑U) at a transition of authority ceremony at Multi National Base — Tarin Kot, Afghanistan. At the ceremony, the outgoing Commander of CT-U, United States Colonel Gerald E. Hadley, handed command over to the new Australian Commander, Colonel Simon Stuart.
CT-U was established in August 2010 under United States command following the withdrawal of the Dutch, with the role of commanding International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) operations in Uruzgan Province. The United States has had the leadership of CT-U since that time.
Australia sees leadership of the CT-U as part of the transition process through which security responsibility will be transferred from ISAF to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF).
Leadership of the CT-U will help ensure that transition in Uruzgan over the coming 12 to 15 month period is effected in a seamless way.
Australia has played a crucial role in preparing Uruzgan for transition of lead security responsibility to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). The Australian Task Groups, Special Forces and the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Uruzgan have worked closely with their International Security Force (ISAF) and Afghan counterparts to improve security and build the capacity and confidence of the ANSF.
Assuming leadership of CT-U will not require an increase in the overall average size of Australia’s presence in Uruzgan.
Images will be available from the Defence Imagery Gallery at: http://images.defence.gov.au/12131445.
SBS Television will provide pool vision of the transition of authority ceremony from Tarin Kot.
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