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RNZAF Stories: Mogadishu Memories

In January 1993 three RNZAF Andover transport aircraft and their crews from No. 42 Squadron were deployed to Mogadishu, Somalia. During the 1990s, the RNZAF was deployed to several war-torn regions of the world as peacekeepers and sources of humanitarian relief, a role they still fulfil today.

Torn apart by civil war between local warlords and with no true government, Somalia was an anarchic state. With widespread famine also affecting the country, the 62 strong RNZAF contingent formed part of the multi-national effort to protect food aid convoys from the warlords' forces. They shared the camp and airfield facilities with American and Australian personnel and aircraft.

RNZAF In Mogadishu, 1993

In their hot and dusty camp next to Mogadishu Airport, the Kiwis were operational within a day of arrival. During their five-month deployment, 233 missions were flown, transporting personnel in and out, carrying supplies and dropping two million leaflets warning the Somali warlords not to attack relief convoys.

The RNZAF personnel and their American and Australian colleagues left in May 1993, having made a valuable contribution to humanitarian relief in one of the most hostile and dangerous regions of the world.

Read more about this deployment in February’s issue of Air Force News, available at the Air Force Museum of New Zealand or online at

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Find out more about our collection and research facilities, read more stories about the RNZAF and it's personnel, submit your own story, or donate an item to the Museum.


Watercolour – ‘Air Force Day 1981’ by Wing Commander Maurice Conly. Artwork depicts the two United States Force F-15 aircraft on the tarmac at the Open Day: F-15c 780500 (left) and F15c 780508 (right) both from the 67th Fighter Squadron, 5th Air Force USAF. From the collection of the Air Force Museum of New Zealand.

Air Force Day ’81

Aerial oblique view of Corsair NZ5320, from No. 3 Servicing Unit, after crash landing in Piako Swamp, 27 October 1944. Image ref HIST489, RNZAF Official.

‘A few of our favourite things’: celebrating 1 year of our photos online

Gloster Meteor NZ6001, flown by Squadron Leader RM McKay, over the Auckland area, 14 February 1946. Image ref OhG2976-54, RNZAF Official.

Meteoric rise: New Zealand’s first jet flight

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