Admiral James Foggo, Commander Allied Joint Force Command Naples, presided the ceremony in presence of special guests and mission members.
We have achieved significant progress with our Iraqi colleagues and partner nations over this past year
"It is an honour to be here today as we recognize the accomplishments of NATO Mission Iraq, the hallmark of NATO's enduring commitment to Iraq's peace, security and stability. We have achieved significant progress with our Iraqi colleagues and partner nations over this past year, improving the capabilities and capacity of Iraq's security forces to prevent the re-emergence of the Daesh terrorist threat. Much has been accomplished and as we meet today's milestone, as Major-General Fortin hands over to Major-General Carignan, we can look back with pride and forward with renewed commitment to this critical mission," said Admiral Foggo.
Transfer of Authority between Major-General Dany Fortin and Major-General Jennie Carignan presided by Admiral James Foggo, Commander Allied Joint Force Command, Naples, Italy.
Major-General Fortin was designated as the first commander of this new NATO Mission Iraq at the end of summer 2018 for a 1-year mandate. Announced earlier in June, Canada accepted to assume the leadership of the mission for a second year.
"Over this first year, our team of military and civilian members from the Alliance and partner countries as well as our local employees have dedicated themselves to this Mission and for that I'm grateful. Most important, we have established strong bonds with the Government of Iraq and its Ministry of Defence," said Major-General Fortin.
The new commander, Major-General Carignan, recently arrived in Baghdad with her team. This leadership transition coincides with the beginning of a rotation through the civilian and military personnel of the mission after been deployed from 6 months to 12 months.
Major-General Dany Fortin and Major-General Jennie Carignan during the ceremony held
in Union III Military Base in Baghdad
"I would like to highlight the accomplishments of Major-General Fortin and his team since the inception of the NATO Mission in Iraq. They worked relentlessly in this non-combat training and advisory mission in support of Iraq with NATO and partner nations," said Major-General Carignan.
Since fall 2018, the mission grew from a small team to a fully-fledged mission that provides advice on capacity building at ministerial level. In addition, advisory and training teams work on a daily basis with Iraqi partners in 12 military schools and institutions including Defence University for Military Studies. NMI is also synchronizing efforts with international partners for building an Iraqi sustainable military training system.