New Minister for Defence Personnel Michael McCormack has travelled to Queensland to visit RAAF Base Amberley and to farewell troops deploying to the Middle East.
RAAF Base Amberley is currently undergoing upgrades in preparation for the arrival of new aircraft, including the Growler and the Spartan.
Minister McCormack toured the facilities and visited Defence personnel at the site, which will have $850 million invested in it over the next decade.
"Amberley is a major operational base for the Air Force and plays a vital role in deploying air combat, mobility and logistics support, including to humanitarian missions and domestic emergency response operations," Mr McCormack said.
"It is great to have the opportunity to meet the RAAF members who dedicate so much of their lives to the Australian Defence Force and hear firsthand about their important work. I have also had the opportunity to inspect the construction and upgrade work being undertaken on base. The government is investing $850 million at Amberley over the decade and a further $700 million between 2025-26 and 2035-36."
Troops deploying to the Middle East on Operation Accordion took part in a farewell parade held at the Australian Army's Lavarack Barracks in Townsville, which was also attended by Minister McCormack.
The Defence Personnel Minister thanked the troops and their families for their sacrifices and service to Australia.
"These dedicated servicemen and women are about to embark on an important mission to support Australia’s operations in the Middle East sacrificing their time with loved ones along with birthdays, anniversaries and other important occasions," the minister said.
"As Minister for Defence Personnel, I know families and loved ones play a big role in the lives of our service men and women, especially when on deployment."
The troops being deployed are from Force Support Element 8. The element comprises personnel from the 3rd Combat Service Support Battalion, along with personnel from the 9th and 10th Force Support Battalion.