New rotation of Lithuanians will ensure security in Ghowr

New rotation of Lithuanians will ensure security in Ghowr

Ninth rotation of Lithuanian-led Provincial Reconstruction Team officially took over the mission in Chaghcharan on May 17. Just like its predecessors, it will provide security in the province for a half of year period. Ensuring security during summer and the upcoming presidential elections will be the most evident challenges PRT-9 will have to face during its deployment. The new rotation is mainly comprised of the troops of Gen. Romualdas Giedraitis Artillery Battalion.

Official changeover ceremony was attended by the Head of the Lithuanian Special Mission in Afghanistan Ambassador Dainius Junevicius, ISAF Regional Commander West Brig. Gen. Rosario Castellano, and Deputy Ghowr Governor Karamudin Raza Zada.

In his address Commander PRT-8 Col. Vytautas Reklaitis thanked his soldiers for the service in the mission and wished success in service and representation of Lithuania for the incoming soldiers of the Artillery Battalion. ISAF Regional Commander West Brig. Gen. Rosario Castellano made the symbolic hand-over of the flag of the Alliance from Commander PRT-8 to Commander PRT-9, Col. Alvydas Siuparis. High representative of NATO wished Lithuanians success in continuing the mission in Afghanistan.

Commander PRT-8 Col. Vytautas Reklaitis pointed out harsh weather conditions as one of the biggest challenges faced during his rotation: „Weather was the major obstacle as huge amounts of snow during winter in Ghowr handicap reaching remote locations of the province. Meanwhile, in spring provincial roads get squashy because the soil does not absorb all the water of the rain season. However, all in all, our mission was successful, our objectives reached, and all the soldiers are going home safe and sound".

„It is equally important for Lithuania to continue cooperation development projects, and keep ensuring overall security situation in the region because insurgent activities are more noticeable in summer. Therefore training of our soldiers will not be discontinued in the mission so that their abilities to respond to emergencies would persist. Supporting soldiers' morals is also crucial ", - added Commander PRT-9 Col. A. Siuparis.

PIO of PRT-8 Lt. Karolis Zikaras, PIO of PRT-9 1st Lt. Marius Varna.


Pictures of 1st Lt. M. Varna.