This will be the 10th Tongan contingent deployed as part of the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI), a partnership between the Solomon Islands and 15 other Pacific countries to help bring back stability, security and prosperity to the nation. Tonga Defence Services has been providing assistance as part of RAMSI since 2004.
Sending off the departing platoon, the Lord Prime Minister Tu'ivakano thanked them for taking up their call of duty.
"I wish you all the best in your mission, as you are good men of this nation. You are representing His Majesty the King, and the people of Tonga," he told the soldiers.
According to the Commander of the Tonga Defence Services Brigadier General Tau'aika 'Uta'atu, the contingent will first travel to Australia for four more weeks of pre-deployment training, before leaving for the Solomon Islands on 29th March 2011.
The Tongan contingent will spend four months in the Solomon Islands, taking over from the Papua New Guinea Defence Force.
Issued by: PMO Website Bureau, Prime Minister's Office, P.O. Box 62, Nuku'alofa, Tonga.