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Minnesota National Guard soldiers to be deployed to Egypt

Many southeastern Minnesota soldiers will be heading to Egypt for a 9-month deployment.

Around 400 soldiers from the Minnesota Army National Guard's Mankato-based 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment will deploy for a 9-month peacekeeping mission to the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt to support the Multi-National Force and Observers, according to a news release.

The deploying battalion includes several companies in Rochester, Winona, and West St. Paul.

"Our soldiers are well trained, experienced and ready when called upon," said battalion commander Lt. Col. Jon Ostercamp in a statement. "Now that we have received our mobilization orders, we can provide some clarity for our families and employers on the year ahead and focus our training on this important mission."

The mission of the approximately 2,000 Multi-National Force and Observers (MFO) is to enforce the 1979 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel. Divided into four zones, the Sinai Peninsula is hosting 12 nations in support of the MFO.


The southern Minnesota "Red Bull" units will mobilize in July and depart for pre-deployment training at Fort Bliss, Texas. They then will begin their mission in Egypt by the end of the summer. When there, the soldiers will provide force protection, serve as a quick reaction force and observe and report violations of the peace treaty in support of the MFO's mission in the region.

Departure ceremonies will be held in each of these communities in early July. Once details are finalized, family members, media and the public will be invited to attend those events.

For more information on the Minnesota National Guard, visit www.MinnesotaNationalGuard.org .

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