New Iraq Commander outlines key tasks

Go down

New Iraq Commander outlines key tasks

Post by Guest on Sun 09 Mar 2008, 7:19 pm


Major General Barney White-Spunner, who recently took over in Iraq as General Officer Commanding the Multi-National Division South East, has given his first press conference to the Iraqi media since arriving in the country.



General White-Spunner, who has command of all British troops in southen Iraq, took over from Major General Graham Binns in February 2008.

In a statement to the Iraqi media General White-Spunner voiced his optimism for the future of Basra and the whole of southern Iraq, saying Basra should become:

"The great regional city and commercial centre that its history demands it should be."
He described his key tasks as:

  • Mentoring, monitoring and training the Iraqi Security Forces.
  • Providing continued support to the Iraqi Security Services.
  • Assistance in the enabling of economic development.

General White-Spunner's statement reflected the commitment of UK troops to get the job done:

"I find myself in a unique position in taking over command of a multi-national division in provinces all under Iraqi control," he said. "Basra has obviously come a long way since December when the Iraqi authorities took over security control. But in just the three weeks I have been here I have been excited by the progress I’ve seen. The forces under my command can now devote themselves to our key intentions – the swift advance of Basra’s economic development and the training of Iraqi forces.

"My focus will be to assist the Iraqi Government, Provincial Council and Iraqi Security Forces to create a secure and prosperous future for the people of Basra."

General White Spunner

"Here there is much to encourage me. I see evidence each and every day of Iraqi Security Forces that are strongly led and willing to fight for their country. The Iraqi Army is growing in both capability and confidence. It has strong and motivated leaders, has competent soldiers with high morale and has demonstrated its ability to exert security control on the streets of Basra.
"The Iraqi Police Service has also demonstrated its ability and willingness to fight for the people on the streets. Its leaders are outstanding and are dedicated to ridding the police of corruption. The border force has demonstrated the potential to contribute to security across the southern provinces by conducting successful operations to counter smuggling.

"The British came to Iraq to help. We have never seen ourselves as an occupation. Some have disagreed. But I hope that now we have withdrawn from the city, handed over security and wish to devote ourselves to development and training, there can no doubts about our intentions. Whilst the multi-national forces have the military technology and power to support your security forces, we will not be here forever. The recent reductions in UK forces here in Basra demonstrates this, but it also demonstrates our confidence in the Iraqi Security Forces.

"The focus of my mission is quite rightly different to my predecessors. My focus will be to assist the Iraqi Government, Provincial Council and Iraqi Security Forces to create a secure and prosperous future for the people of Basra. The same people who seek to make Basra the great regional city and commercial centre that its history demands it should be.

"I see a huge opportunity for economic growth in Basra. The first meeting of the Basra Economic Forum last week was a major step. Next week the Basra Development Commission is holding ‘Invest Basra 2008’ in Kuwait to bring regional investors and Basra businesses together. This is a very exciting prospect.
"However, it is only with improvements in security that economic development will come to Basra. And improved security will only come with the commitment of all parties, not just the Iraqi Security Forces. But you are not alone. Multi-national forces will continue to train and develop the Iraqi Security Forces and provide strong support to them. The UK has made a commitment to support Iraq and we will honour that commitment.

"Even in their darkest days I know that Iraqis have been proud to be Iraqi. Now let us help construct a city and a province and government service in which Iraqis can rejoice and take pride."

Provided By: MOD - http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/DefenceNews/MilitaryOperations/NewIraqCommanderOutlinesKeyTasks.htm

Guest
Guest


Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum