Friday, July 16, 2010

16 Air Assault Brigade prepare for Afghanistan

16 Air Assault Brigade, the first UK troops to enter Helmand province in 2002 and support the International Security Assistance Force's (ISAF's) efforts to create stability in Afghanistan, are preparing to travel back for their fourth Afghan deployment.

Report by Leigh Hamilton

Brigadier James Chiswell

16 Air Assault Brigade last returned to the UK from Afghanistan in October 2008. They are currently taking part in a tough mission rehearsal exercise on Salisbury Plain to ensure that they're ready for Operation HERRICK 13.

The 7,500-person brigade consists of four infantry battalions, two parachute battalions and most of the Army's aviation, including all the UK's attack helicopters and a regiment of Lynx aircraft, as well as the service support such as gunners, logisticians and engineers.

16 Air Assault Brigade will take over from 4th Mechanized Brigade in Afghanistan in October this year to continue the work to create a stable Afghanistan for the civilians living there, as well as supporting the Afghan National Army (ANA) and the Afghan National Police.

Private James Nelson from 3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment during 16 Air Assault Brigade's final training exercise on the Salisbury Plain Training Area

With months of training under their belts, the troops from 16 Air Assault Brigade are well prepared for the challenging situation that they will encounter when they deploy in October 2010, but they also know that it won't be easy.

The Brigade Commander, Brigadier James Chiswell, said:

"There is a professional resolve. The security situation is difficult, but we do difficult and that's why we're there.

To see the full article click here

Pictures: Sergeant Adrian Harlen & Richard Watt

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