Suffolk troops off to Afghanistan

TROOPS from across Suffolk have headed out to Afghanistan to take over operations in one of the most battle-scarred regions of the country.For the past three days, members of the 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment's “B” company - which is the Suffolk company - have been flying out to the Helmand province of the war-torn nation.

TROOPS from across Suffolk have headed out to Afghanistan to take over operations in one of the most battle-scarred regions of the country.

For the past three days, members of the 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment's “B” company - which is the Suffolk company - have been flying out to the Helmand province of the war-torn nation.

They will be taking over from the Royal Marines to help front rebuilding operations in the province. The official hand-over of duties takes place tomorrow.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence said about 100 troops had flown out and would soon be joined by other companies from the regiment, which has its headquarters in Bury St Edmunds.


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The soldiers have recently completed a training exercise in the east African state of Kenya and enjoyed two weeks of rest before flying out of RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire.

The 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment will team up with the 1st Battalion The Grenadier Guards, the 1st Battalion The Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment and The Light Dragoons in its deployment to Camp Bastion.

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Their main task in Afghanistan will be to help bring security to the province in support of the UK Task Force as it continues to provide a stable environment to help rebuild the country.

They will help to facilitate reconstruction and development work in the region.

Their tour was confirmed in February by the defence secretary Des Browne who announced the end of the operational tour of 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines.

The deployment of 3 Commando Brigade, led by Brigadier Jerry Thomas, has included 42 Commando, 45 Commando, 29 Commando Royal Artillery, the Command Support Group, and 800 Naval Air Squadron.

The Royal Marines' 3 Commando Brigade is a core component of the UK's Joint Rapid Reaction Force is based in the south-west of England. They took over from the Colchester-based 16 Air Assault Brigade last October.

laurence.cawley@eadt.co.uk

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