Friday, October 8, 2010

302 SAF Personnel Honoured for Counter-Piracy in the Gulf of Aden

RSS Endurance deploying a Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat to conduct surveillance operations as part of its counter-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden.

08 October 2010 -- Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Teo Chee Hean presented the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Overseas Service Medal (OSM) to 302 servicemen at a ceremony held this afternoon at Changi Naval Base, in recognition of their contributions to the international counter-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden (GoA). The recipients included 300 servicemen who were part of an SAF task group that had just returned from the GoA, and two officers who served as part of a Combined Task Force (CTF) 151 command team, led by the Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN), from Apr to Sep this year.

Recognising the high state of readiness and camaraderie shown by the task group, Mr Teo said: "Your ability to integrate Navy, Air Force and Army personnel to carry out challenging operations in unfamiliar conditions is testimony to the high standards of professionalism in the SAF and the tough and realistic training that you go through to prepare for such missions." Reaffirming Singapore's commitment to the international counter-piracy efforts in the GoA, Mr Teo announced at the ceremony that a Fokker-50 Maritime Patrol Aircraft will be deployed from Dec 2010 to Feb next year to provide maritime air surveillance operations in the GoA, and that the SAF had also accepted an invitation to command CTF 151 for the second time from Mar to Jun 2011. He added that another SAF task group comprising a Landing Ship Tank (LST) with two Super Pumas (SPs) will be deployed to the GoA in the second half of 2011. This will be the third time that the SAF is deploying a task group to the GoA.

The returning SAF task group, which comprised RSS Endurance, an LST with two SPs on board, was deployed in June this year. Commending the SAF task group on its contributions, Deputy Commander Combined Maritime Forces, Commodore Tim Fraser said, "I would like to convey my sincere thanks and admiration for the men and women of the Singapore Armed Forces Task Group for playing a significant role in the operations. In the conduct of their missions, they have demonstrated the professionalism and commitment that we have all come to expect and respect from the SAF."

Speech by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Teo Chee Hean at the Overseas Service Medal Presentation Ceremony.


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