Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare today officially welcomed home soldiers from Timor Leste Task Group 3 on their return from operations in Timor Leste.
The Army Reservists are from the NSW based 8th Brigade.
Mr Clare was joined by Member for Kingsford Smith Peter Garrett at the welcome home parade held at Randwick Barracks today.
“These men and women have done a tremendous job,” Mr Clare said.
“Over the past eight months they have missed Christmas at home, time with their families and given up their regular jobs to serve in Timor Leste.
“The progress Timor Leste is making is remarkable and is due in no small part to the efforts of the men and women of the Australian Defence Force.
“I had met many of these soldiers when I visited Timor Leste last year.
“This is our chance to thank them for the work they have done and thank their families for the sacrifice they have made to help provide security to one of our nearest neighbours as they build their young nation.”
The parade also commemorated the tragic loss of Craftsman Beau Pridue, who died from injuries sustained in a vehicle accident near the town of Baucau in Timor Leste on 15 September 2011.
“Craftsman Pridue and his service to his country will not be forgotten,” Mr Clare said.
Mr Garrett said Randwick Barracks was an important part of his local community and it terrific to welcome home the NSW based 8th Brigade.
“Today we show our appreciation to the members of Timor Leste Task Group 3, who have returned after a successful deployment,” Mr Garrett said.
“The contribution they have made to Operation ASTUTE will provide long lasting benefits to the people of Timor Leste.”
Predominately drawn from 8th Brigade units based around northern NSW, members of Timor Leste Task Group - 3 were deployed in various infantry, logistics and Headquarters roles.
The Timor Leste Task Group is the Australian Army contribution to the International Stabilisation Force, which remains in East Timor at the invitation of the Government of Timor Leste to provide support to local security forces in maintaining a secure and peaceful environment.
The 8th Brigade is a Reserve brigade-level formation of the Australian Army. The brigade's mission is to enable provision of specified individual and collective capabilities to support, sustain and reinforce Australian Army operations.
Korena Flanagan - 0418 251 316
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