Australian Defence Force completes mission in Uruzgan
16 December 2013
The Australian Defence Force mission in Uruzgan has concluded and the majority of ADF members are on their way home.
Combined Team Uruzgan (CT-U), under the command of Colonel Wade Stothart, transferred the remaining infrastructure at Multi National Base Tarin Kot to the Afghan Government on 11 December with the remaining personnel departing the province on 15 December.
Australia has maintained a permanent presence in Uruzgan province since 2005 and assumed leadership of CT-U from the United States in October 2012, allowing Australia to play a greater role in managing the transition to Afghan security control in Uruzgan.
Major General Paul LaCamera, Commander of ISAF’s Regional Command South said that the Afghans have had the lead for security in Uruzgan for a year now.
“In this time the Afghans have contained the insurgency and built on the gains of recent years.
“Uruzgan is a testament to the transition process in Afghanistan and shows we are on the right track,” Major General LaCamera said.
Home to nearly 10,000 people at the height of the campaign, Multi-National Base -Tarin Kot had developed extensive infrastructure since 2005 including a sealed airfield and new civilian terminal.
The base has been transferred to various Afghan Government ministries in accordance with the determination of the Uruzgan Base Closure Commission held in August this year. All transferred infrastructure has been deemed safe, secure and sustainable.
The Commander of the Australian Joint Task Force in the Middle East, Major General Craig Orme paid tribute to the effort of Australians who have served in the province over the years together with our coalition partners.
“Uruzgan has been a true coalition effort,” Major General Orme said.
“Australian Defence personnel have worked tirelessly alongside forces from the U.S., Netherlands, France, Singapore, Slovak Republic, and New Zealand and have made a positive and enduring contribution to Uruzgan.
“We can be proud of what we have achieved, and have completed our mission in Uruzgan knowing that we have made a difference.”
Following the completion of Australia’s mission in Uruzgan, Australia will shift to a nationally-oriented mission to provide ongoing training and advisory support for the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF).
Around 400 Defence personnel will remain in Afghanistan to advise and train the Afghan National Security Forces as they develop their command and logistics capabilities.”
This contingent will include instructors, advisors, support staff and force protection elements assigned to the Afghan National Army (ANA) Office Academy and the Special Operations Advisory Group based in Kabul; ongoing advisory support to the ANA’s 205 Corps Headquarters in Kandahar; ongoing commitment of advisors to the Logistics Training Advisory Team in Kabul; and a continuation of embed staff within a range of roles in ISAF Headquarters.