Peacekeeping delegation returns to hero’s welcome

James Kon

Major Mohd Hishamuddin bin Haji Marzoki, who led 30 Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) personnel under the United Nations Interim Forces (UNIFIL) peacekeeping mission, advised future deployment members to be mentally prepared for being away from their family in a new environment.

“Physical fitness is also important, as is being up-to-date with global issues,” he said.

The 30 RBAF personnel, who were part of the Malaysian Battalion 850-7, returned to the country on December 4, after completing a 13-month peacekeeping mission.

Major Mohd Hishamuddin said, “The most memorable experience for us was working alongside the Malaysian troops, getting to know them and developing better rapport between us.

Joint Force Commander Brigadier General Haji Abdul Razak bin Haji Abdul Kadir removes the arm band of Major Mohd Hishamuddin bin Haji Marzoki, signifying the completion of the peacekeeping mission. PHOTOS: JAMES KON
The Royal Brunei Armed Forces personnel involved in the peacekeeping mission

“We were also able to work with armed forces from different regions, learn new skills and share experiences in operational activities, allowing us to gain better insight into peacekeeping in the United Nations (UN).

“I am personally satisfied with us completing this mission. Despite the challenges in view of the high number of COVID-19 cases in Lebanon, all of us came home safely.”

“We express our gratitude to Allah the Almighty for blessing us with good health throughout our operation, the Brunei government, and our family for keeping us in their prayers. l speak for us all when I say we are elated to be home, back in the arms of our family. It is definitely a happy reunion,” Major Mohd Hishamuddin said.

Joint Force Commander Brigadier General Haji Abdul Razak bin Haji Abdul Kadir received the Brunei contingent at a welcoming home ceremony at the multi-purpose hall of the Bolkiah Garrison yesterday.

Deputy Permanent Secretary and Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Defence (MinDef), RBAF Chief of Staff, directors, deputy service commanders and commandants, senior officers, and officers from the MinDef and RBAF, as well as representatives from the Malaysian High Commission in Brunei Darussalam also attended.

The event started with the recitation of Surah Al-Fatihah and Doa Selamat, followed by a detachment of badges.

The RBAF personnel were awarded medals of National Service of the United Nations, presented by Chief of the Defence Forces Malaysia General Tan Sri Dato Sri Haji Affendi bin Buang at the Army Basic Training Centre in Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan on December 3.