Italian Military Mission has new commander
Colonel Luca Mariz of the Italian Air Force has assumed command of the Italian Military Mission in Malta, taking over from Colonel Rocco Vastola of the Italian Army.
A change of command ceremony was held today at Luqa barracks in the presence of Italian ambassador Efisio Luigi Marras and AFM Commander Brigadier Martin Xuereb.
Col Vastola held the post for three years and now moves to the Italian Army General Staff in Rome where he will join the NCO evaluation Commission under direct command of the Army Chief of Staff.
Colonel Mariz also served in Malta, from 2000 to 2003, as head of the mission's Search and Rescue (SAR).
The Italian Military Mission in Malta has some 50 officers and men from the three Italian armed services. It helps the AFM in training and in operations such as search and rescue missions. An Italian Air Force AB212 helicopter is based in Malta and is crewed jointly by Italian and Maltese personnel.