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Crown Princess and Mr Daniel Westling visit Afghanistan

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The Crown Princess and Colonel Christer Tistam, also head of the Swedish contingent FS18, at Camp Northern Lights in Afghanistan. Photo: Henrik Eskilsson/Swedish Armed Forces

On 3-4 January, The Crown Princess and Mr Daniel Westling paid a visit to the Swedish-Finnish forces at Camp Northern Lights in Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan.
"Meeting you on site has been a very rewarding experience and I'm extremely impressed by the work that is being carried out," said The Crown Princess.

The Crown Princess and Mr Daniel Westling's visit to Camp Northern Lights was much appreciated by the soldiers in the Afghanistan forces.

The Crown Princess revealed that she had wanted to visit Afghanistan for a long time and that when the opportunity arose, she did not hesitate.

Some of the soldiers who were not out on missions took the opportunity to show the equipment that is used in their daily work.

Crown Princess test drives Combat Vehicle 90


At the rifle company, The Crown Princess gained an insight into how a rifle section works in a Combat Vehicle 90. The Crown Princess also had the chance to test drive the vehicle.

The test drive ended at the combat vehicle garage, where some soldiers were busy doing maintenance on vehicles and equipment in preparation for future missions. The visit provided an enjoyable break and an opportunity for the soldiers to give their own accounts of their experiences from the field.

Mines a major threat for soldiers


Soldiers are under constant threat from mines in the Swedish-Finnish area of responsibility. The mine clearers gave The Crown Princess and Mr Daniel Westling a detailed description of the work involved in trying to minimise as far as possible the threat from, for example, home-made bombs.

The Crown Princess and Mr Daniel Westling sent a greeting to the soldiers before leaving Camp Northern Lights:

"Many of us are thinking of you and appreciate the work that you do; it´s been very rewarding for me to come here and meet the unit. I wish you luck with your work and hope that you genuinely feel that you are making a difference to the lives of the people here in Afghanistan."