Written by Lt Cdr David Collins RN
|Lieutenant General Commenda escorted by Major General Brieger is welcomed by an Honour Guard to EUFOR.|
Lieutenant General Othmar Commenda, the Austrian Deputy Chief of Defence, was welcomed to Camp Butmir by his compatriot Major General Robert Brieger, the Commander of EUFOR on 18 July. His arrival for the two day visit was formally marked by an Honour Guard comprising soldiers from all 24 troop contributing nations.
During a busy programme, General Commenda visited the 6th Brigade of the Armed Forces BiH near Banja Luka. After being briefed on EUFOR’s approach to training and building capacity of the Armed Forces BiH, the General took the opportunity to watch a EUFOR Embedded Training Team working with BiH troops.
During an Office Call, General Brieger briefed General Commenda on the current situation in BiH and the status of the EUFOR mission. They engaged in a wide ranging set of discussions about EUFOR’s role as the military component of the overarching European Security and Defence Policy mission in BiH.
As the largest troop contributing nation to Op Althea the Austrian soldiers were pleased to meet General Commenda. In addition to General Brieger, Austrian personnel are currently fulfilling a number of other important functions that support the EUFOR mission. These include key command advisory roles, support to air operations and engagement with local communities through the Liaison and Observation Teams in Bratunac, Tuzla, Brcko as well as the Regional Co-ordination Centre in Banja Luka. In addition, Austria also provides a company of troops for the Multinational Battalion. Praising the professionalism of the Austrian troops, General Commenda re-iterated Austria’s commitment to BiH.
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