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Jan 24 2014

347 days in Kabul the NRDC -ITA Contingent Return Home

Malpensa, 24 January 2014. The NATO Rapid Deployable Corps-Italy (NRDC-ITA) mission in Afghanistan is over. Today, men and women of the Ugo Mara barracks arrived at Malpensa airport at the end of their tour of duty in ISAF, after a year away from home.

At the head of the contingent was Lieutenant General Giorgio Battisti, NRDC-ITA Commander, who worked as Chief of Staff of the ISAF mission during the whole of 2013.

In the last year he has been leading the international staff of the mission, made up of personnel coming from 49 different nations, in the fundamental and delicate transition phase, managing the hand over of responsibility to the Afghan security forces and the beginning of the final phase of the mission, foreseen for December 2014.

In a speech to the media, Lieutenant General Battisti said he was proud of the professionalism NRDC-ITA personnel demonstrated to their international comrades during their staying in Afghanistan. They have been working effectively and with determination thanks to the intense training they received in Italy, together with the respect for culture, customs and traditions of the Afghan people.

“I would like to express my feelings of great friendship and respect for the Afghan people, who are struggling to get over the results of 35 years of conflict,” the general said, remembering also all the fallen members of the coalition, in particular the 53 Italians who died in Afghanistan during the 12 years of the mission.

“I would also like to remember the families of those who lost their lives on duty and express to them my deepest sympathy and sorrow. Family members, who are able to bear such an excruciating grief with extraordinary dignity, are the real heroes,” Lieutenant General Battisti concluded before leaving the airport for the “Ugo Mara” barracks in Solbiate Olona.

Story by NRDC Public Affairs Office


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