Christmas and New Year In Quarantine For Returning Soldiers

The soldiers are back home after more than twenty months of peacekeeping duties in Iraq. Their extended stay was due to COVID-19.
26 Dec 2021 15:51
Christmas and New Year In Quarantine For Returning Soldiers
Some of RFMF soldiers arrive at the Nadi International Airport on Christmas Eve.
Seventy five Republic of Fiji Military Forces soldiers arrived safely into the country on Christmas Eve via an Australian Airforce Aircraft.
Led by their Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Mikaele War, are glad to be back home after more than twenty months of peacekeeping duties in Iraq.
The soldiers will now go into 14 days of mandatory quarantine before they can finally meet their loved ones.
Meanwhile in the Solomons,  the remaining Taskforce ‘𝘊𝘰𝘳𝘪 𝘔𝘢𝘥𝘢’ personnel in continue to work under a Multinational Police Support Group which involves Australia and New Zealand whilst supporting the Solomon International Assisting Force and local law enforcement agencies.
Over the past few days the team embarked on community engagement to boost confidence amongst the locals.
Led by the Contingent Commander the soldiers were joined by those from the Fijian community as they sung Christmas carols around Honiara on Christmas eve.
“The singing of Christmas carols on Christmas Eve is a tradition back home. So, the main objective of this exercise is to bring the message of Christmas which is reconciliation, peace and hope to these communities,” said Lieutenant Colonel Toanikeve.
The team first visited Opetai Delaiverata a Fijian national who now reside in the Solomons. The centenarian from Nakasaleka village in Kadavu left Fiji for the Solomons in 1951 to work as a surveyor. He later fell in love with the island and has lived there with his family ever since.
The Malaita Community in Burns Creek was the second venue for the groups performance. It was an unplanned visit but as the singing commenced, the community began to gather in large numbers to hear the beautiful melody from the Fijians.
Expressing his gratitude, Community Board Chairman Pastor Martin Nehemiah, said the performance has brought the light of peace into the community.
Following their visit to Burns Creek, the team visited and performed at the residence of the Solomon Islands Prime Minister Mannaseh Sogovare and ended their visits at the residence of Mr. Atueta Bale-kana the Fijian Consular in the Solomons.
During their Christmas lunch today, the team was joined by the Fijian community and a few personnel from the Australian Defence Force led by their Commander Lieutenant Colonel Steve Frankel.

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