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They Have Proven Themselves in the Balkans and Afghanistan

Szöveg: László Szűcs |  2013. március 13. 17:04

“Working in an international environment is a constant professional challenge, where besides the professional expertise, the man himself, the allied soldier and through him the armed forces and the country sending him are put to the test day after day” – this was what Brig.- Gen. Albert Sáfár said in Tata on March 7.


The Air Force Chief of the HDF Joint Force Command delivered a speech at the “welcome
home" ceremony held for the seventh rotation of the HDF KFOR Contingent and the staff
officers and NCOs returning from service in individual positions with the ISAF mission in
Afghanistan and the Balkans Joint Operations Area. In his speech, he said that “the soldiers
of the seventh rotation of the KFOR contingent – who were mainly drawn from the HDF 25th
“Klapka György" Infantry Brigade of Tata to deploy in Kosovo – have completed their tasks
in full, further enhancing the good reputation of Hungary and the Hungarian Defence Forces
through their disciplined attitude and outstanding performance".

Brig.-Gen. Sáfár added that the Portuguese and Hungarian peacekeepers serving with the
KFOR Tactical Reserve Maneuver Battalion (KTM) – which is directly subordinated to the
commander of KFOR – had demonstrated that they were able to work together efficiently.
“During the last six months, the soldiers of the Hungarian contingent had the primary
missions of ensuring freedom of movement for the civil population and guaranteeing a safe
and secure environment. Additionally, they mounted presence patrols on multiple occasions,
mainly in the Serb- and Albanian-populated town of Mitrovica in Northern Kosovo" – the
general said.


Addressing those returning from individual staff officer positions of the NATO International
Security Assistance Force (ISAF), the Air Force Chief pointed out that the Hungarian soldiers
participating in the operation had been serving at multiple duty stations and commands during
the recent period. They worked conscientiously in circumstances that were significantly
different from the usual, and thereby worthily represented Hungary and the Hungarian
Defence Forces.

Gen. Albert Sáfár said special words of welcome to Brig.-Gen. Péter Ernő Siposs, who has
served as EUFOR Chief of Staff in the last one year, and has recently returned from Sarajevo.

In his speech, the Air Force Chief thanked the family members for the “understanding,
support and secure background" which enabled the soldiers to participate in faraway missions


All troops returning from missions were presented with the Service Medal “For
Peacekeeping", and several service members received other tokens of appreciation.

Answering our question, Lt.-Col. István Kása, the commander of the seventh rotation of
the HDF KFOR Contingent told us that in the assessment of the leaders of the contingent
and the KFOR mission, the Hungarian soldiers had performed their tasks with outstanding
professionalism. These tasks covered the whole spectrum of peacekeeping duties. Over the
last months, all KFOR tasks involved at some level the KTM battalion and so the Hungarian

Photo: Gábor Galovtsik