NZDF and British Army Train in Tekapo

Members of C (MOGAUNG) Company from 1st Royal Gurkha Rifles exercise in Tekapo
Members of C (MOGAUNG) Company from 1st Royal Gurkha Rifles exercise in Tekapo

24 May 2016

The 1st Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles (1 RGR) has spent the past four weeks at the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) Military Training Area in Tekapo on their its bi-annual training exercise.

Exercise Pacific Kukri focused on mission command and basic infantry skills. The training was designed as preparation for worldwide military operations.

“The exercise aimed to test C (MOGAUNG) Company’s ability to operate at company level in environments such as Tekapo”, said Second in Command of C (MOGAUNG) Company 1 RGR Captain Babindra Gurung.

“We have conducted preparatory training from the lowest level right up to the company level, as well as our final two testing exercises. The training here has been fantastic.

“For most of our soldiers this is their first time in New Zealand and they have enjoyed training in a new environment as well as getting to know the locals at an Anzac Day parade,” he said.

A platoon of New Zealand Army soldiers from 2nd/1st Battalion of the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment’s (RNZIR) Delta company also took part in the exercise.

“This year’s exercise has seen the closest involvement of NZDF with 1 RGR so far. In addition to logistical and admin support, this year a platoon from 2/1 RNZIR has been embedded with our company allowing us to train side by side for the first time on this exercise,” said Captain Gurung.

1 RGR Senior Platoon Commander Lieutenant Jamie Dick said training with the New Zealand Army was very rewarding.

“Our tactics and procedures are very similar but we have both been learning from each other a lot. The history between New Zealand forces and the Gurkhas runs all the way back to Gallipoli in 1915 and many times since. Training together is worthwhile and continues to foster an already strong relationship.”

1 RGR is now spending time in Queenstown doing some adventurous training activity before returning to Brunei, where they are it is based.

The Royal Gurkha Rifles is a rifle regiment of the British Army, forming part of the Brigade of Gurkhas. The history of the service of the Brigade of Gurkhas to the British Crown goes back as far as 1815. The Brigade still maintains a Battalion in Brunei and plays a full part in the British Army operational deployments worldwide.


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This page was last reviewed on 24 May 2016.