Video: Irish troops finalise training ahead of Syria deployment
Published 29/08/2013 | 08:16
Irish peacekeeping troops are finalising their training as they prepare for next month’s deployment in the conflict zone on the Golan Heights in Syria.
They are currently taking part in a mission readiness exercise at the Glen of Imaal in west Wicklow where they are undergoing a series of rigorous military challenges to test their skills for life on the border between Syria and Israel.
The 115-strong contingent will act as the mobile reserve for the United Nations disengagement observer force (Undof) and will be called in as reinforcements as well as taking part in regular patrols, escorts and other operations.
The United Nations requested the participation of the Irish soldiers there following a decision by the Austrian government to withdraw its troops as a result of a spill-over of the internal Syrian conflict into the Golan.
The Irish were chosen because of their known track record in the Middle East where they are acceptable to all sides and regarded as “acting in good faith”.