SILVER SPADE CEREMONY, DATE PALM PROJECT, BASRA, 19 JULY 2007 [Allocated Title]
Dignitaries attend a silver spade ceremony at the completion of an Iraqi date palm project, involving the planting of hundreds of date palms and co-sponsored by British forces (under the codename Operation Devizes).
Local men dig and plant date palms at the project site. Arrival of various dignitaries, including Ghali Najem Muttar, Chairman of the Provincial Reconstruction and Development Committee (PRDC) for Basra, followed by Major General Jonathan Shaw, GOC Multi-National Division (South East) and Richard Jones, British Consul General for Basra: latter is seen meeting Sheik Yaroub al-Emarah, Agricultural Chairman of the PRDC. Speeches and statements to the Combat Camera Team are given by various dignitaries, after which Mr Muttar and Major General Shaw ceremonially plant date palms of their own. Local men let the water into the irrigation channels supplying the date palms. VIPs speak with the press. Interviews with Major General Shaw, Lieutenant Colonel James Swift (Officer Commanding 2nd Battalion the Royal Welsh) and Colonel Peter Sims, Australian Army, Chief of Civilian Military Effects (J9) for MND(SE).