Singaporean soldiers begin Thunder Warrior exercise in New Zealand
Singaporean soldiers are participating in this year's Thunder Warrior exercise in New Zealand, a move that could strengthen bilateral defence cooperation between the countries.
More than 500 personnel from Singapore Artillery are taking part in the exercise, which began on 6 January and will run until 26 January at the Waiouru Training Area.
Participants included national servicemen from the 24th and 289th Battalions.
Thunder Warrior entailed an integrated live-firing exercise, which demonstrated Singapore's self-propelled Primus howitzer, the Safari weapon-locating radar, and a field artillery meteorological system.
Both countries also agreed to explore opportunities for further cooperation between the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) and New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF), including training opportunities in New Zealand.
New Zealand Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee and Singapore Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen also welcomed the establishment of annual Air Force meetings and work groups to discuss new cooperation initiatives.
In addition to training, both armed forces interacted through professional exchanges, visits and military courses.
Singapore and New Zealand previously collaborated on overseas operations, such as in Timor-Leste and Afghanistan.
New Zealand also supported the upcoming counter-terrorism deployment of the Singaporean Armed Forces medical team to Iraq.
Image: Singapore self-propelled howitzer Primus participating in an integrated artillery live-firing exercise. Photo: courtesy of Government of Singapore.