Korean Troops Take on Leadership Role in Iraq's Rebuilding
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 3, 2004 Soldiers from the Republic of Korea assumed operational authority for the northeastern province of Irbil, Iraq, Oct. 1, Multinational Force Iraq officials reported.
More than 2,500 ROK Zaytun Division soldiers accepted their new role from the Multinational Brigade Northwest during ceremonies in Mosul marking the transfer of responsibility for safety, stability and civil/military operations in the province, officials said.
"The arrival of soldiers from the Republic of Korea into this great nation demonstrates the strong partnership between Iraq, Korea and the coalition forces," said British Maj. Gen. Andrew Farquhar, deputy commanding general of Multinational Corps Iraq and acting commander of Task Force Olympia.
"As soldiers, it is all of our duties to improve our conditions day by day. I know that our partnership will only improve the security situation in northern Iraq, and by supporting the Iraqi people we can help to develop the true potential of this great country."
Many of the Korean soldiers deployed to Irbil are engineers and civil/military specialists who will be responsible for the construction and repair of infrastructure in the area.
"By assuming the responsibility of the northeast area of operation, including Irbil and part of Ninevah Province, all servicemen and women of the Zaytun Division are well aware of the historical sense of duty, as well as the extremely important responsibility they are taking on," said ROK Maj. Gen. Eui- Don Hwang, Zaytun Division commander.
"I make a firm promise to provide dedicated support and assistance to bringing stability within the regions based on close cooperation, mutual understanding and truthful friendship with the Kurdish regional government as well as local residents," said Hwang.