ADF members awarded Meritorious Unit Citation 25 years on from Rwandan humanitarian crisis

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The Hon Darren Chester MP

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs

Minister for Defence Personnel

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25 July 2019

AUSTRALIAN Service Contingents 1 and 2 who served in Rwanda on Operation Tamar were today recognised with the award of a Meritorious Unit Citation.

Operation Tamar was Australia’s contribution to the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda, which consisted of sending approximately 700 Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel in two contingents to provide medical support and security for the medics.

Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel Darren Chester said from 1994 to 1996 it is estimated that more than 800,000 innocent civilians were killed in Rwanda by armed militias and trained military forces attracting world-wide attention and condemnation.

“The men and women of Australian Service Contingents 1 and 2 demonstrated extraordinary courage, discipline and compassion in the performance of their duties and on behalf of their country we recognise their meritorious service,” Mr Chester said.

The Governor-General, His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd), gazetted the award of the Meritorious Unit Citation today, on the 25th Anniversary of Australian Service Contingent 1 arriving in Rwanda.

To be eligible to wear the citation insignia with the Federation Star, members must have completed 30 days service on Operation Tamar between the dates of 25 July 1994 and 8 March 1996.

Veterans who believe they are eligible are encouraged to apply directly to the Department of Defence, through the Defence Medals Online Application form.

Open Arms — Veterans and Families Counselling provides support for current and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families. Free and confidential help is available 24/7. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 1800 011 046 or +61 8 8241 4546) or visit

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