WASHINGTON — Operation Freedom’s Sentinel is now a qualifying operation for award of the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Pentagon announced Thursday.
The designation, approved in a memo issued Wednesday by Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jessica Wright, is effective Jan. 1, 2015, the official start date of OFS.
OFS is a mission to train Afghan soldiers and conduct counterterrorism operations against extremists in Afghanistan. It is a follow-on mission to the Afghanistan component of Operation Enduring Freedom, which was launched against al-Qaida, the Taliban and other extremist groups after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
The new GWOT-EM designation for OFS applies to troops who have deployed overseas to support the operation from countries or ships outside of Afghanistan. There are no deployment requirements for the GWOT-SM.
Service members stationed in Afghanistan participating in OFS are eligible for the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, not the GWOT-EM.
The following are the approved operations for the GWOT medals:
- Enduring Freedom (OEF)
- Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
- Nomad Shadow (ONS)
- New Dawn (OND)
- Inherent Resolve (OIR)
- Freedom’s Sentinel (OFS)