Showing posts with label New-Zealand. Show all posts
Showing posts with label New-Zealand. Show all posts

Monday, April 13, 2015

New Zealand Mandate

New Zealand Mandate Decision. The island country of New Zealand has been active in Afghanistan for more than a decade and they officially ended operations recently. New Zealand was one of the first nations to commit their SOF units - the New Zealand Special Air Service (SAS). I can remember them doing their 'long-range desert patrols' in desert mobility vehicles for six weeks at a time in western Afghanistan in 2002 - getting resupplied with ammo, water, and fuel by helicopter every few days. At that time the closest friendly forces were a Special Forces A-team (12-man detachment) in Zaranj and Herat and some conventional forces at Kanadahar. It was an austere environment during that period. The nearest MEDEVAC helicopter would come from Kandahar using CSAR birds - but only if an airborne refueler could meet the chopper on the return leg. Then, because medical care was limited at KAF, a seriously injured patient would be transloaded off the chopper onto a C-130 to fly to BAF where a surgical unit was located. Some NZSAS MEDEVACs took more than 14 hours. There was no "Golden Hour" back then. The New Zealanders were also very involved in governance and development projects including the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Bamyan province. At this time the Kiwis have some military personnel working at the Afghanistan National Army Training Academy in Kabul. The New Zealand government is expected to make a decision soon on whether to continue the Afghan mission. (Radio New Zealand, April 10, 2015).

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Bamyan Province is Safe Yet Vulnerable

Ruins in Bamyan province, Afghanistan
photo by SGT Christopher Bonebrake
The New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) mission will soon come to an end in Bamyan province, Afghanistan. While the province enjoys relative peace and safety when compared to other provinces in Afghanistan there is still cause for concern about the future. The province is poor and isolated in high mountains and although not far in miles from Kabul it seems to be remote in terms of services, aid, and in the number of Afghan security forces that are deployed there. Read more in "Bamyan: A province in the eye of a storm", DVIDS, March 8, 2013.

Monday, March 4, 2013

New Zealand PRT in Bamyan Province

New Zealand Light Armored Vehicles travel through  a Bamyan
 mountain pass in Feb 2013. (photo by SGT Chris Bonebrake)
The New Zealand PRT located in Bamyan province, Afghanistan has the good fortune to be in one of the more beautiful regions of Afghanistan. Bamyam is located in the center mountainous region of Afghanistan and for a long time has been considered a very secure province. It does have some security concerns in some of the districts. The NZ PRT is tasked with maintaining security in Bamyan province. The PRT conducts presence patrols, provides advice and assistance to the Provincial Governor, the district sub-governors, and the Afghan National Police (ANP). In addition, the NZ PRT oversees aid projects which provide services and employment in the region. Learn more about the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team at the link below found at the New Zealand Defence Force website.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Amnesty International Requests Investigation of New Zealands's Special Air Service (SAS)

Amnesty International is requesting an investigation into New Zealand's Special Air Service activities in Afghanistan. Read more in "Afghan mission needs investigating, Amnesty", Politics, April 2, 2012.

Monday, April 2, 2012

New Zealand SAS Completes Afghan Tour

The New Zealand SAS has completed a two and one-half year tour of duty in Afghanistan. Read more in "SAS returning home from Afghanistan", New Zealand Herald, April 1, 2012.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

New Zealand Extends SAS Deployment in Afghanistan

New Zealand will keep SAS troopers in Afghanistan to continue its work with the Afghan Crisis Response Unit.  Read more in "New Zealand extends special forces deployment to Afghanistan", New, February 7, 2011.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

New Zealand Rejects Karzai's Call for End of Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Afghanistan

The Minister of Defence of New Zealand has rejected calls by Karzai to dismantle the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Afghanistan. New Zealand has been running the PRT in Bamyan Province in central Afghanistan for several years. 
"Speaking to the BBC, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai said the provincial reconstruction teams throughout the country are hindering the development of home-grown institutions. Mr Karzai said the teams are like an alternative system of government and threaten to undermine stability in Afghanistan.

There are 125 Defence Force personnel with New Zealand's Provincial Reconstruction Team in Bamyan province in central Afghanistan. The team has been based there since 2003 running regular security patrols and working with local companies to build bridges, schools and police stations." 
Read more in the news article "Minister defends work of NZ team in Bamyan", Radio New Zealand News, February 10, 2011.