Prince Harry visits HQ of Australian SAS in Perth

  • 6 October 2013
  • From the section UK
Prince Harry in Perth on 6 September 2013
Image caption Prince Harry met serving and former members of the Australian SAS during the visit

Prince Harry has honoured special forces soldiers killed in the line of duty during an unannounced visit to the headquarters of the Australian SAS.

He joined families of fallen Special Air Service Regiment members to lay wreaths at Campbell Barracks in Perth.

Prince Harry was accompanied by Australia's PM Tony Abbott when he flew into the city for the last engagement of his 36-hour official visit.

He is now heading to a Dubai fundraiser for his aids charity, Sentebale.

Prince Harry, a captain in the British Army who has served twice in Afghanistan, met and had lunch with current and former members of the Australian SAS unit and toured their base.

Wreaths were laid in the Garden of Reflection at the barracks, and he also met members of groups which provide support to the unit.

The commanding officer, whose identity was only given as "Lieutenant Colonel G", said the unit was "humbled and grateful" that the prince had "made the time to join us".

"Prince Harry knows what it means to serve his nation on operations and most importantly what it means to the families of those serving," he said.

"Today's visit by His Royal Highness and the prime minister represents a unique opportunity to recognise the broader SAS regimental family that provides the back-up and support at home.

Image caption Prince Harry's state visit to Australia ended on Sunday with a trip to Perth. He was accompanied by Australian PM Tony Abbott on the flight from Sydney
Image caption He was met at the airport by West Australian Premier Colin Barnett and his wife Lyn. The prince asked about the area's "best surfing spot", Mr Barnett revealed
Image caption Prince Harry made an unannounced visit to the headquarters of the Australian SAS where he saw the families of members killed on operations or in training
Image caption Prince Harry, a serving captain in the British Army, laid a wreath in the remembrance garden at Campbell Barracks

"Families play a critical role for those serving in the SASR, and indeed the whole of the Australian Defence Force, and we are thankful that the families of some of our serving, former and fallen members were able to be here today."

On Saturday, Prince Harry begun his first official trip to Australia by joining celebrations to mark its navy's arrival at Sydney Harbour 100 years ago.

He attended the International Fleet Review, featuring some 40 warships from 17 countries, including the Royal Navy's type 45 destroyer, HMS Daring.

Thousands of people flocked to the harbour as Prince Harry met crowds before boarding a boat for a reception with Mr Abbott at his official residence in the city.

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