Task Group TAJI Graduates another Iraqi Army Brigade
1 February 2016
More than 900 Iraqi Army soldiers have become the latest Iraqi trainees to graduate from the combined Australian-New Zealand Building Partner Capacity training mission in Iraq.
The soldiers, from the Iraqi Army's 71st Brigade, 15th Division, have been training at the Taji Military Complex, northwest of Baghdad, since September 30th.
The graduation marked a significant milestone for Task Group Taji as it took the total numbers of Iraqi soldiers trained by the Task Group since its inception to over 3000.
The Brigade received training in military skills including marksmanship, urban building clearances, the employment of combined arms, medical instruction and obstacle breaching techniques.
Throughout their course they also further developed their tactics, techniques and procedures for squad through to company-level operations and underwent training on International Humanitarian Law and the Laws of Armed Conflict.
Task Group Taji Commander Colonel Gavin Keating said the Brigade was well prepared to take the fight to Daesh.
"We have seen significant improvements in the Brigade since they began training and we are confident they are well prepared for future operations," he said.
"Their graduation was an important milestone and it was auspicious it was held on the day after Ramadi was retaken by Iraq Security Forces."
Iraqi Army Ground Forces Command Training Director Major General Sa'eed Na'eem Abd Allah wished the Brigade well in their future operations.
"This intensive course has produced good results and has prepared you to defeat Daesh," he said.
"You are just some of our brave soldiers and fighters from all over the Army who will liberate Iraq from the hands of the terrorists.
"I wish you every success in your future endeavours and we will hear good news about the Brigade when you achieve victory after victory."
COL Keating said the Task Group could be proud of its efforts.
"This was very much a team effort between the Iraqi Army and New Zealand and Australian trainers,” he said.
“I am extremely happy with the efforts made by our trainers since we assumed responsibility for training at Taji. They have displayed excellent professionalism under very fluid conditions.
"This is the first graduation parade we have attended since we arrived in Iraq and it was a great privilege to be here."