New Zealand Defence Force: Deployment to East Timor — Performance of the Helicopter Detachment.

In November 2001 we issued our report on the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) Deployment to East Timor. That report looked at how the NZDF planned for the East Timor operation, prepared a joint force, and subsequently deployed that force to East Timor.

We said in the November 2001 report that we would be reporting on a second examination of the roles performed by two particular elements of the New Zealand force in East Timor – helicopters and medical support.

This report contains the results of the first part of that examination. It looks at the contribution of the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s helicopter detachment – looking mainly at planning for deployment during early to mid-1999, and operations from September 1999 to February 2000. I will shortly be publishing our report on the second part of the examination – Ministry of Defence: Deployment to East Timor – Performance of the Health Support Services.

As with our earlier examination, the professionalism and helpfulness of the New Zealand Defence Force personnel in preparing this report have impressed us. I thank in particular the personnel from No. 3 Squadron and other Air Force units we spoke to for their willingness and co-operation.

I hope that Parliament will find this report of interest, and that it will provide the NZDF with a basis to further improve current practices.

K B Brady
Controller and Auditor-General

18 December 2002