Medal Parade Marks The End Of Mission For The UK Platoon At Ar-Rustamiyah Compound
|NTM-I DCOM, MG Giuseppe Spinelli, delivers the NATO Medal to a member of the force protection UK Platoon leaving Iraq
BAGHDAD, Iraq, 26th July 09 – 36 members of the UK force protection Platoon from the 3rd Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment (Duke of Wellington's) were awarded the NATO Medal for serving in Iraq during a simple yet significant ceremony at the Ar-Rustamiyah military base, home to the Iraqi Joint Staff College and Military Academy on a sunny morning.
Lieutenant General Chris Brown, MNF-I Deputy Commander, and MG Spinelli, NTM-I Deputy Commander attended the event which also marks the end of mission for the UK unit, who are due to leave Iraq in the next few days.
Both Generals had warm words of appreciation for the soldiers who performed impeccably throughout their tour of duty and MG Spinelli, who personally pinned the medals on their chest said: "I am aware of the difficulties you have faced during your duty while serving here at Ar-Rustamiyah. You have had the challenging task of ensuring security for this compound and for all the training activities performed within IMAR (Iraqi Military Academy in Ar-Rustimaiyah) complex. Despite of this, your overall performance has always been outstanding…You demonstrated great professionalism and strong and remarkable sense of duty.”
Captain Nick Spicer, the platoon commander, also commented: "It has been a very rewarding mission and it has been a privilege to serve with other NATO Countries. We are sad to leave but we know what we have done ensuring security to the Academy.”
NTM-I has being training, mentoring and advising officers in the Iraqi Security Forces since 2004, in order to assist the Government of Iraq resume its important place in the international community and to improve the security of all Iraqi people with democratic security forces.
NTM-I mentors and supports the INDU, INDC and the Defence Strategic Studies Institute. Other cooperation projects for NATO in Iraq are out of country training courses for Iraqi nationals at NATO schools as well as National Police training led by Italian Carabinieri and at Ar Rustamiyah the Iraqi Military Academy along with the Joint Staff College and Command College.
NTM–I officers also provide mentoring and advice to the Prime Minister's National Operations Centre, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior Command Centre and the Iraqi Ministry of Defence Joint Operations Centre.