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Families greet Tornado crews following final mission in Afghanistan

Servicemen and women from RAF Marham have returned home following their final operation in Afghanistan.

The force has been there since July 2009 and in that time has played an important role in coalition combat missions.

The final ground troops pulled out of Camp Bastion in Helmand province last month.

As the Tornado jets flew into West Norfolk, family of the 170 ground and air crew were there to meet them.

Tanya Mercer reports

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RAF Marham servicemen and women return from Afghanistan

Tornado jets on the ground in Afghanistan. Credit: Ministry of Defence.

Servicemen and women from RAF Marham who have been supporting NATO operations in Afghanistan have arrived home.

The Tornado jets landed at their West Norfolk base where the crew's family were waiting to meet them.

In total, 170 servicemen and women, including ground crew, are returning.

For more on the squadron's return home, watch Sunday evening's ITV News Anglia at 6.30pm.

RAF Marham Tornados fly home from Afghanistan

Tornado GR4s from RAF Marham in Norfolk have left Afghanistan and are heading back to the UK after more than five years of operations in the country.

Tornados leaving Afghanistan Credit: Ministry of Defence

The fast jets, from 31 Squadron based at RAF Marham flew out of Kandahar airfield early this morning having flown their final missions.

Tornado on the ground Credit: MoD

Aircrew and ground crew from the squadron have provided vital support to NATO efforts in the country since they took over from RAF Harriers in June 2009.

During its time in Afghanistan, the Tornado GR4 has provided vital information about enemy activity on the ground, using the Litening III and RAPTOR reconnaissance pods to spot potential hazards such as roadside bombs.

The jets have also provided close air support deterring enemy forces by flying low and fast over their location or striking important targets with precision when necessary to do so.

– MoD spokesperson
'Tornado force' Credit: MoD

The Tornado remains the fast jet workhorse of the RAF and has performed superbly over many years in Afghanistan, supplying life saving intelligence and precision weapons in support of our mission there.

The whole Tornado force should be proud or their work and I pay tribute to their professionalism.

– Defence Secretary, Michael Fallon

Air and ground crew will now make their way via RAF Akrotiri, Cyprus, to RAF Marham where they will be welcomed home by friends and family.

Libyan cadets return home early after assaults in Cambridge

More than 300 Libyan soldiers being trained at at Bassingbourn barracks near Cambridge will be sent home early, the MOD has confirmed.

It follows attacks on three women in Cambridge last Sunday. Two Libyan soldiers have pleaded guilty to assault and another is facing charges.

The majority of recruits have responded positively to the training despite the ongoing political uncertainty in Libya but there have been disciplinary issues.

Training was initially expected to last until the end of November but we have agreed with the Libyan Government that it is best for all involved to bring forward the training completion date. The recruits will be returning to Libya in the coming days.

– MoD spokesperson

On Monday, the MP for South Cambridgeshire Andrew Lansley put pressure on the MOD to remove the troops early.

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  1. Stuart Leithes

Living history in boy's bedroom

A Norfolk youngster has such a passion for the RAF that he's turned his bedroom into a military museum.

Sam Boore was inspired by a trip to the RAF Marham heritage centre so he's filled his room with military memorabilia.

It's even been designated as an official "learning destination" by the Children's University organisation.

Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Stuart Leithes

Libyan troops to be trained in Cambridgeshire

Libyan troops are to be trained in Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire Credit: ITV News Anglia

Up to 2,000 members of the Libyan Armed Forces are to be trained by British military at the army site in Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said: “The Government firmly believes that a stable, open and democratic Libya contributing to wider regional stability and security is in the UK’s interest.

"That is why we are working closely with the US and other European countries, to lead the broader international effort, to support Libya’s democratic transition and the Libyan authorities’ efforts to make visible improvements in public security in Libya.”

Libyan armed forces to be trained in Cambridgeshire

Up to 2,000 members of the Libyan Armed Forces are to be trained by British military at the army site in Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire.

The British government says it's an effort to professionalise Libya's military. They will be coached in basic infantry skills and leadership.

Foreign Secretary William Hague says they will be trained in small groups over a 10-week course and will be vetted in advance for medical, physical and behavioural suitability.

The Libyan Government will pay the costs of the training.

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