Remarks at the farewell for troops for the Building Partner Capacity Mission – Operation OKRA

REMARKS AT THE FAREWELL FOR TROOPS
BUILDING PARTNER CAPACITY MISSION
OPERATION OKRA

ENOGGERA BARRACKS, BRISBANE
TUESDAY 21 APRIL 2015

Thank you Prime Minister.

As you prepare to depart for this Building Partner Capacity mission today, I want to pay tribute to those you leave behind – your family and your friends.

Your vocation to be a soldier is one that you have chosen.

Their vocation to be the spouse – or family member – of a soldier is, in many cases, not one they have chosen themselves.

They are – in my mind – and I suspect also yours, the unsung heroes.

Today, we recognise them and we thank them.

It is also important to note that – one hundred years on from the Gallipoli landings – Australian and New Zealand soldiers again join together; to defend our shared interests at home and abroad.

You are our modern Anzacs and this is indeed our shared legacy.

On behalf of your Government and the people of Australia, we honour you, we thank you and we wish you God speed.