Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Commander In Chief Flies In To Visit RAF Personnel in Afghanistan

Air Chief Marshal Simon Bryant made his first visit to Afghanistan this week as the newly appointed Commander in Chief Air (CINCAIR).

Air Chief Marshal Bryant flew in to Afghanistan to visit Royal Air Force personnel who are playing a key role on operations. He was accompanied by Air Vice Marshal Mike Lloyd, acting Deputy Commander in Chief Personnel.

CINCAIR talks to RAF personnel on the Flight Line at Camp Bastion
Photo: Sqn Ldr Nic Wood/MOD 2010

This was a return visit for the Air Chief Marshal, but his first visit in his new role as CINCAIR and while the visit focussed on operations, he placed a strong emphasis on personnel issues. Air Chief Marshal Bryant was keen to stress how important it was for him to meet RAF personnel in Afghanistan.

Air Chief Marshall Bryant said: “It is important that I meet RAF personnel on operations so I understand fully the contribution that the RAF is making. I have been extremely impressed by the professionalism and commitment of our people in Afghanistan, they are providing a vital contribution in a range of roles both on the ground and in the air.”

He explained that RAF Personnel carry out a range of roles, from Air Transport, Support Helicopter, Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and reconnaissance and Combat ISTAR to the RAF Regiment Force Protection experts and the RAF Medical Emergency Response teams who provide live saving care in the air.”

He continued: “My visit provides an opportunity to hear personal experiences associated with individuals’ deployments with a view to improving that experience and contributing more effectively to operations. These conversations provide me with the evidence I need to enhance the vital contribution that air power is making in Afghanistan and to keep personnel abreast of what is happening back in the UK”.

CINCAIR began his visit in Kabul, before flying first to Kandahar Airfield and then on to Camp Bastion. The final stop of his visit was Lashkar Gah where visited Task Force Helmand Headquarters.

Sergeant Ross Pinches, 904 Tactical Imagery Wing said: “It was great to meet CINCAIR, he was really interested in hearing about my job in the Tactical Imagery Wing and he took time to listen to our views and answer a number of questions that personnel raised about the uncertainties of the SDSR.”

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