Commemorating Australian Service in Somalia poster 2022

Commemorating Australian Service in Somalia poster 2022 cover

The 2022 commemorative poster acknowledges the 30th anniversary of the Australian Defence Force deployment to Somalia from 1992 to 1995. This year also marks the 75th anniversary of Australian involvement in peacekeeping operations.

Series: Commemorative posters
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Wartime snapshot

In 1992, the east African nation of Somalia was beset by famine and civil conflict. There was no central authority and armed groups were preventing the delivery of humanitarian aid to a starving population.

A small United Nations (UN) peacekeeping force deployed to Mogadishu, the capital city, in April that year, but it could ensure neither the airport’s security nor the transport and distribution of aid. When the UN expanded its operation, Australia committed a 30-strong tri-service Movement Control Unit whose first members arrived in Somalia in late 1992.

As the situation continued to deteriorate, the United States offered a division of troops to a larger peacemaking operation. Australia contributed naval vessels and a battalion group whose operations centred around the town of Baidoa. After a 5-month deployment, the Australian battalion left Somalia in May.

In July 1993, the original Movement Control Unit also departed, to be replaced by a second contingent, bolstered with additional Air Force and a small number of Army personnel.

In 1994, with Somalia no closer to resolving its civil conflict and little prospect of improvement in the country’s circumstances, the peacekeeping operation came to an end. Most of Australia’s last troops left Somalia in November 1994.

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