News: Combined Team Uruzgan completes mission, transfers base
TARIN KOWT, Afghanistan -The International Security Assistance Force’s primary mission in Uruzgan, Afghanistan, concluded on Dec. 15 after a decade of operating in the province.
Combined Team Uruzgan transferred the remaining infrastructure at Multi National Base Tarin Kot to the Afghan government on Dec. 11, and departed the province four days later.
A small ISAF liaison team will remain in Uruzgan to maintain relationships with provincial officials.
Maj. Gen. Paul LaCamera, commander of ISAF’s Regional Command South, announced the completion of the Combined Team Uruzgan mission at a flag lowering ceremony in Tarin Kot to mark the occasion.
“The Afghan security forces are in the lead. We are not leaving Uruzgan since we are going to have a team up here to continue to train, advise, and assist our Afghan partners as they have the ability to set the conditions for free, transparent, and fair elections,” LaCamera said.
Home to nearly 10,000 people at the height of the campaign, Multi National Base Tarin Kot developed extensive infrastructure during its decade of operation, including a paved airfield and new civilian terminal.
The base has been transferred to various Afghan Government ministries in accordance with the determination of the Uruzgan Base Closure Commission held in August this year. All transferred infrastructure has been deemed safe, secure and sustainable.
The Ministry of Defence received the majority of ISAF’s protected living and working accommodation, along with a newly built barracks for 1000 troops.
The Ministry of Interior received living and working quarters for the Provincial Response Company – an arm of the Afghan National Police – as well as a Police Training Centre.
The Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation received the airfield, air operations tower and the air load terminal.
In closing the mission, LaCamera paid tribute to the nations who have served in the province over the years.
“I think the people of Uruzgan, especially the people of Australia and our coalition partners can be very, very proud of the soldiers who have served up here over the years. The Afghan security forces number over 40,000 in RC South when they did not exist before; Australia has played a very large role in that success,” said LaCamera.
“Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to the families of our fallen. Thank you for your service and sacrifice,” added LaCamera.