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    Romanians say farewell to Zabul

    Romanians say farewell to Zabul

    Photo By Maj. Nevin Blankenship | Col. Marius Harabagiu, 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade commander, presents Zabul...... read more read more



    Story by Maj. Nevin Blankenship 

    116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team

    ZABUL PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The Romanian Army’s 282nd Mechanized Brigade assumed authority from the 1st Mechanized Brigade at Forward Operating Base Lagman Dec 4.

    The 282nd Romanian Mechanized Brigade replaced 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade as part of a regular unit rotation in support of Operating Enduring Freedom. The primary mission of the 282nd Mechanized Brigade is to serve as a counter-insurgency force with the Afghan National Army in Zabul province.

    A farewell dinner was held at the FOB Lagman dining facility instead of having a traditional transfer of authority ceremony. Distinguished guests for the dinner included Zabul Provincial Governor Mohammad Ashraf Naseri, Zabul Deputy Provincial Governor Mohammad Jan Rasolyaar, Zabul Provincial Chief of Police Fasil Ahmad Sherzad, Zabul Province’s National Director of Security Chief Maj. Gen. Mohammad Sediq and Commanding General of the Romanian Land Forces Maj. Gen. Ariton Ionita.

    Naseri spoke of the relationships they built with the Romanians and the increased security in the province due to their efforts.

    “We spent some time getting to know each other, and I am upset to see my friends leaving,” said Naseri. “Thank you for providing security and stability for my people, because this gives hope to the people.”

    “My staff and I will give support to the incoming unit and we will build strong relationships,” said Naseri.

    Col. Blake C. Ortner, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team and Combined Team Zabul commander, told of the accomplishments of the 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade and his confidence in the 282nd Romanian Mechanized Brigade to continue the mission of Combined Team Zabul.

    “The efforts alone of the 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade has kept Highway 1 open,” said Ortner. “They stood shoulder-to-shoulder with their Afghan partners to make the province a better place. I’m sure the 282nd Romanian Mechanized Brigade will build relationships with the Afghan’s and continue to increase security in the province.”

    The outgoing commander of the 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade, Col. Marius Harabagiu, thanked his partners for their guidance and the relationships they built together during their deployment.

    “I wish my friends well in the future, and I hope to come back one day to visit you,” said Harabagiu. “Thank you for your friendship and guidance during our deployment.”

    Col. Adrian Tonea, the incoming commander of the 282nd Romanian Mechanized Brigade said that his soldiers were prepared to continue the mission of the 1st Romanian Mechanized Brigade and looked forward to working with their Afghan partners.

    As a token of appreciation for a job well done, Col. Ortner presented certificates, American flags flown at FOB Lagman on Romanian National Day and 116th IBCT coins to the outgoing Romanian soldiers.



    Date Taken: 12.05.2011
    Date Posted: 12.08.2011 00:48
    Story ID: 81045
    Location: QALAT, AF 

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