Leader of the Opposition Bill Shorten has thanked Australian Defence Force personnel for their professionalism, courage and commitment during a visit to the Middle East.
Mr Shorten was briefed by Australian command and the Head of Mission in Iraq on operations in the region, including efforts to disrupt and degrade Daesh in Iraq.
In his first visit to Iraq as Opposition Leader, Mr Shorten commended the unit and the individuals present who received Australia Day honours for their work between 2007 and 2014
“In the centenary of the ANZAC, it was humbling to see these men and women continue that proud tradition and an honour to stand with them to belatedly mark our national day,” Mr Shorten said.
“It has been my great privilege to visit our troops stationed in the Middle East and to thank them for the outstanding and vital work they do.
“I was humbled by the men and women I met at both the Australian Force base in the Middle East Region and in Baghdad; their dedication, skill and sense of purpose.
“I conveyed Federal Labor’s bipartisan support for the current mission in Iraq to the personnel on the ground, and our thanks for their service and their sacrifice.
“I also assured them that their families were in our thoughts and would always be looked after while they were on deployment.
“All Australians should be proud of the work our Defence Force personnel are doing to defeat Daesh and enhance the capabilities of Iraqi Security Forces.
“It was heartening to see the constructive, positive role our men and women are playing in this complex and multifaceted battle, and the level of cooperation across our agencies and the coalition.
“I thank the Prime Minister for his assistance in arranging this visit.”
WEDNESDAY, 28 JANUARY 2015
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