ISF troops receive East Timor medal
20 May 2011
Troops of the International Stabilisation Force (ISF) serving in East Timor have been honoured with the Timor-Leste Solidarity Medal, awarded by His Excellency, President Dr Jose Ramos Horta.
The special ceremony was held at the Presidential Palace in Dili on 18 May 2011, with Australian andNew Zealandtroops accepting the coveted medal.
Commander of the ISF, Colonel Michael Reilly, who was presented with the country’s Medal of Merit for his leadership, said it was a special day for the troops.
“All of them were proud to accept and wear the medal,” Colonel Reilly said.
Approximately 260 Australian troops are about to return home after their eight-month deployment inEast Timor. They will be replaced by a similar number of personnel.
Also returning home are 70New Zealandtroops, following a changeover with incoming soldiers earlier this week.
At the invitation of the Government of East Timor, the ISF is supporting theEast Timorsecurity forces to maintain a stable and secure environment in the country.
The Timor-Leste Solidarity Medal (Medalha Solidariedade de Timor-Leste) was introduced by President Ramos-Horta in recognition of forces’ contribution to peace and stability operations inEast Timor.
Following the ceremony at the Presidential Palace, the Australian soldiers, made up of regular and reserve Defence members, were also presented with the Australian Service Medal (ASM) by the Ambassador forAustraliainEast Timor, His Excellency Mr. Miles Armitage.
The ISF’sNew Zealandsoldiers will receive theirNew ZealandGeneral Service Medal (East Timor) when they finish their deployment.
“All those returning home can do so in the knowledge that they have served their country with pride and professionalism and I am very proud of them all,” Colonel Reilly said.
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