Forty soldiers from the Royal Scots Borderers, now based in Northern Ireland, have been deployed to Sierra Leone on a humanitarian mission to combat the deadly Ebola outbreak.
The Royal Scots Borderers (1st Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland) moved from Edinburgh to their new base at Palace Barracks in Holywood, Co Down, just a few weeks ago and were visited by the battalion’s royal colonel, the Princess Royal, today (Wednesday, October 8).
Commanding officer Lieutenant Colonel Matt Munro said his soldiers were ready for their African assignment.
“We deployed in the first instance to Sierra Leone at very short notice not knowing how long my people were likely to be there. But they are hugely professional and I have spoken before, not just about the quality of the soldiers, but also about the quality of their training,” he said.
“There are some peculiar threats to this operation clearly relating to the Ebola virus and of course there is a risk of soldiers from this battalion contracting the virus, but it is a very low risk because there are all sorts of very practical and sensible measures that my people can employ to ensure that the risk is kept to an absolute minimum. ”
Britain is sending over 700 troops and medical personnel, naval assets and helicopters, in the coming days to help combat the outbreak which has so far killed more than 3,500 people in West Africa.