8 Nov 2012

NZ troops leaving East Timor

6:56 pm on 8 November 2012

New Zealand's second peace-keeping mission to East Timor ends on Thursday when about 70 soldiers will board the first of two C-130 aircraft for a short flight to Darwin.

On board will be the 13th troop rotation since New Zealand troops returned to the country after violence flared in 2006.

Earlier waves of soldiers kept the peace there from 1999 until the early 2000s.

Their departure follows a request from the East Timorese government to handle their own security and reports by the United Nations calling for the mission to be brought to an end.

A small group will stay under special bi-lateral or United Nations training projects.