Transfer of authority in Train, Advise, Assist Command-West between Sassari Brigade and Pinerolo Brigade, Herat, Afghanistan. (Italian Armed Forces photo by Train, Advise and Assist Command-West Public Affairs)
By: Maj. Gianluca Cinque, Resolute Support Public Affairs
HERAT, Afghanistan – After completing a successful six-month tour in western Afghanistan, Italian Army Brig. Gen. Gianluca Carai, Sassari Brigade commander, officially handed over command of the Train, Advise, and Assist Command-West to Italian Army Brig. Gen. Francesco Bruno, Pinerolo Brigade commander, during a transition of authority ceremony, June 12, at Camp Arena.
"I’d like to recognize Brig. Gen. Gianluca Carai and the Sassari Brigade for the great job they have done here during these past months,” praised U.S. Army Gen. John Nicholson, Resolute Support commander. "Based on the island of Sardinia, this Brigade headquarters deployed with the 152nd regiment, and immediately established a great reputation throughout the country.”
Many other distinguished civilian and military authorities also attended the ceremony, including the Mr. Roberto Cantone, Italian ambassador in Afghanistan, Italian Army Gen. Riccardo Marchiò, NATO Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum commander, Italian Army Maj. Gen. Massimo Panizzi, Italian Senior National Representative to Resolute Support; Afghan Army Brig. Gen. Qadiri, 207th Corps commander and Brigadier General Adeel, 606th police commander, the Governors of Herat, Farah, Ghor and Badghis provinces.
During his speech, Marchiò congratulated the Sassari Brigade for its outstanding results achieved in the last months and wished the same to the newcomer Pinerolo Brigade for its mandate.
Nicholson remarked how the contributions made by Italy across the world, with troops and diplomatic efforts, are clearly demonstrating a steady commitment to the cause of global security. He thanked the Italians for leading the international effort in a critical region of Afghanistan over the years.
Nicholson also recognized Train, Advise, and Assist Command-West’s firm commitment when thanking them for their assistance to the Afghan National Army Special Forces, Afghan Air Forces, 207th Corps, Afghan National Police and National Directorate of Security, who were able to drive the enemy out of Farah city and pursue them into the surroundings districts.
"Without the successes here in TAAC-W, I do not believe we would be where we are today, with two peace offers on the table and an unprecedented ceasefire over Eid,” he stated.
Finally, Nicholson welcomed Bruno and the Pinerolo Brigade, requesting he and his unit carry on the forward momentum and take the train, advise, and assist mission to the next level in a delicate period of time represented by the upcoming elections, and nationwide focus on peace and reconciliation.
Established in 2015, Resolute Support (RS) is a NATO-led, non-combat mission to train, advise and assist the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF), who assumed nationwide responsibility for Afghanistan’s security following the conclusion of the previous NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission. Its purpose is to help the Afghan security forces and institutions develop the capacity to defend Afghanistan and protect its citizens in a sustainable manner.