Posted 25 June 2013 11:40am

A Centenary of Canberra banner has brought a reminder of home to Australian troops and civilians serving in Afghanistan.

Centenary of Canberra Executive Director Jeremy Lasek said that Chief Minister Katy Gallagher recently sent the banner and a letter of support to all Australian troops, and particularly those from the nation’s capital, serving their country in Afghanistan.

“Our city has always had a strong and enduring association with the Services, dating back to the very first days of our city with the establishment of the Military College in 1911,” the message said. 

“The accompanying Centenary of Canberra banner is a small gesture of the ACT Government’s appreciation of the brave work that you are undertaking in Afghanistan. 

The thoughts of all Canberrans are with you.”

Australia’s military contribution to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan is deployed under Operation Slipper. Australia’s military contribution includes an annual average of 1550 Australian Defence Force personnel deployed within Afghanistan. These numbers vary depending on operational requirements and shifting seasonal conditions.

In keeping with the ISAF strategy to strengthen civilian engagement in Afghanistan and to better integrate civilian and military efforts, Australia now has about 50 civilians working in Afghanistan, in addition to about 10 Defence civilians.

Image caption: (Rear l-r) Fred Smith, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), Steve Burns and Brek Batley, Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), Major Haydn Barlow, Australian Army. (Front l-r) Corporal Chris Moore, Australian Army, and David Windsor, DFAT.