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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume II

355 — General Freyberg to the Minister of Defence

General Freyberg to the Minister of Defence

3 December 1943

Further to my report of 26 November on the LRDG. The Officer Commanding the New Zealand Squadron2 has come to see me here in Italy. New Zealand casualties for the Leros operation are further reduced, only seven other ranks now being missing. The total casualties, therefore, are one officer, 29 other ranks.

2Major A. I. Guild, CO A (NZ) Squadron, LRDG, 1942–43.

With reference to the last paragraph of the report, the information regarding the loss of two Indian brigades was incorrect. The garrison of the islands comprised four British battalions and some anti-aircraft and 25-pounder artillery. The statement of the Officer Commanding the New Zealand Squadron confirms the opinions expressed in my cables and reports. I am arranging that the personnel of the New Zealand Squadron now in Haifa should be recalled to Maadi for employment as reinforcements to the New Zealand Division.