The New Zealand Defence Force will, over the next three weeks, begin to deploy up to 120 personnel to the United Kingdom to train Ukrainian infantry recruits.
FILE PHOTO: New Zealand Army infantry ‘indian file’ behind a moving Light Armoured Vehicle. NZDF image.
The deployment, announced by the New Zealand government today, extends until 30 November and will see an infantry training contingent, drawn from the Army, split into two teams to train approximately 800 Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel.
Chief of Defence Air Marshal Kevin Short said the government decision followed an invitation from the UK Armed Forces for the NZDF to contribute to the infantry training programme.
“I am very pleased that this deployment has been approved, particularly for the Army, as it provides an opportunity for some of our people to contribute further in a very meaningful way as we respond to a request from a close partner,” Air Marshal Short said.
“The deployment is a good indication of the high regard our partners have for our professionalism as a military force.”
The NZDF contingent will travel via civilian flights to the UK in tranches and will begin their work to equip Ukrainian recruits with the core skills to be effective in front-line combat.
No NZDF personnel will enter Ukraine during the deployment.
The training is based on the UK’s basic soldier course, which includes weapon handling, combat first aid, operational law and other soldier skills.
More New Zealand/Ukraine coverage here.