Australian Defence Force (ADF) members of Security Detachment Seventeen, known as SECDET XVII, returned home to Australia today after a successful eight-month deployment to Iraq.
The 33-member team was deployed as part of Operation KRUGER, the ADF’s contribution to the provision of security and support for the Australian Embassy and its staff in Baghdad.
A parade was held at the Australian Baghdad Embassy on 14 May 11 to transfer responsibility to the new rotation, SECDET Eighteen (XVIII), from the Brisbane-based 1st Military Police Battalion.
Commander of Australian Forces in the Middle East, Major General Angus Campbell, said that the members of SECDET XVII had accomplished their mission of supporting Australian diplomats.
“Although security in Baghdad is improving, it’s essential our Embassy staff are protected while undertaking their important duties,” Major General Campbell said.
“Your contribution in providing security has been invaluable to the successful Australian diplomatic mission in Iraq.”
The ADF has been providing security to the Australian Embassy in Bagdad for eight years.
During the deployment, SECDET XVII supported more than 1127 security activities for Embassy staff, averaging five separate tasks per day.
The detachment was raised by the 2nd Cavalry Regiment in Darwin and comprised personnel drawn from seven units across the Army and Air Force.
Officer Commanding SECDET XVII, Major Shaun Richards, said his unit had continued the achievements of previous deployments and built on Defence’s reputation for professional service in support of its Foreign Affairs partners.
“Our efforts in providing security to the Australian Embassy in a difficult environment have allowed the diplomatic effort to succeed in its mission to promote Australia’s national interests.” Major Richards said.
SECDET XVII arrive home in Australia on Thursday, 19 May 11.
Ministerial Support and Public Affairs,
Department of Defence,