1990 - 1995
BUSH - GORBACHEV SUMMIT CONFERENCE
The Prime Minister Dr. Eddie Fenech Adami
expressed his satisfaction
at the good organisation of security measures taken for the summit
meeting between Presidents Bush and Gorbachev. Speaking at the
Armed Forces of Malta headquarters in Luqa Dr. Fenech Adami said
all security operations taken for the summit were controlled by
the AFM and the Police Corps, in coordination with US and Soviet
A special operations centre was set
up at the AFM headquarters keeping under continuous scrutiny areas
affected by the summit, such as Marsaxlokk Bay and the airport,
with the use of maps and monitors and the help of the Civil Aviation
Dr. Fenech Adami visited the centre
and also met Maltese, American and Soviet officials working together
on the control of security measures. He said he was glad that
no problems has arisen and added that once again Malta had shown
that, although it was a small country, it had been able to cope
with the organisation of the summit, which was not an easy task.
He thanked the AFM Commander
John Spiteri, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Alfred Calleja and
members of the two corps for the good work they had done, something
which honoured the Maltese people.
NEW AFM COMMANDER TAKES OVER
On the 24th September 1991, Brigadier
John Spiteri the out going Commander of the Armed forces of Malta,
and his successor Colonel Maurice E. Calleja made a
on the Prime Minister at the Auberge de Castille. Dr. Fenech
Adami thanked Brigadier Spiteri for his services to the country
and said he had no doubt that Colonel Calleja who took over, would
efficiently carry out his duties as Commander.
Brigadier Spiteri was appointed AFM
Commander in 1980 and promoted Brigadier in 1988 when the AFM
and the Task Force amalgamated. Both he and Colonel Calleja were
trained at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. Colonel Calleja
has been colonel since 1989 and commanded the Task force between
1987 and 1988.
Colonel Maurice E. Calleja the new
commander of the AFM was appointed on the 25th September 1991.
Brigadier Calleja was educated at St.Edwards College and the
Royal Military of Sandhurst. He was commissioned in the Royal
Malta Artillery in 1954. Served in Malta in 1955 to 1964 and
attended in various courses in the United Kingdom and North Africa.
He was transport Major with B.A.O.R. West Germany from 1964 to
1968. In 1970 he joined the M.L.F. as Major Company Commander
and in 1972 became 2nd in Command Pioneer corps Battalion, 1980
Deputy Commander Task Force and promoted Lieutenant Colonel in
1982 and Colonel 1986, when he became Deputy Commander Task Force
and Commander in 1987. He took over as Commander AFM following
the retirement of Brigadier J. Spiteri in September 1991. Colonel
Calleja was promoted to Brigadier.
FIRST FIXED WING AIRCRAFT FOR THE
The Armed Forces of Malta took delivery
of its first fixed wing aircraft on 4th February 1992: five single-engined
Cessna Bird Dog l 19 F spotters bought at a nominal price from
the United States. The Cessnas were used for Coastal Patrol,
search operations and for pilot training. The fixed wing aircraft
augmented the AFM's five helicopters - a Jet Ranger and four
LONG AND EFFICIENT SERVICE MEDALS
Long service and efficiency medals were
presented to 253 officers and men of the Armed Forces of Malta
by the Minister on 2nd April 1992. It was a simple ceremony held
in two stages, the officers receiving their medals in the Cabinet
room, other ranks at the top of the stairs after assembling in
the courtyard. All had the medals handed to them except AFM Commander
Brigadier Maurice E. Calleja who had the medal pinned to his chest.
Among the officers was the longest serving
man in the AFM, Commander George Cini, who joined the RMA 45 years
ago as a 16 year old boy. He also holds the MBE, the Coronation
Medal and Good Conduct Medal. He was followed by Major Carmel
Agius who joined some six months later.
The new medal is presented to all serving
officers and men with over 18 years of service having a clean
conduct sheet. Those with over 30 years service get medal with
two clasps. A medal with one clasp is given to those having served
between 25 and 30 years.
NEW CRAFT FOR THE MARITIME SQUADRON
AND THE HELICOPTER SQUADRON
On the 9th of June 1992, the AFM received
three patrol craft and two helicopters from the Italian Government,
bringing the total complement of such equipment to 12 patrol boats
and seven helicopters. These will be used for search and rescue
operations, to provide emergency services between Malta and Gozo
and to and from oil rigs off Malta as well as assist the police
ANOTHER BRIGADIER FOR THE AFM
On December 1993 Brigadier Maurice
Calleja resigned from Commander AFM. Colonel Claude M. Gaffiero
was promoted to Brigadier and took over command of the AFM.
Brigadier Claude M.
Gaffiero was born
in Malta on the 11th November, 1935 and was educated at Lyceum
and at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, which he joined in
On 16th July 1956 he was commissioned
into the Royal Malta Artillery and following courses at schools
of Artillery in England and Wales, he was posted to 1st Heavy
Anti- Aircraft Regiment and employed as a Troop Subaltern at Delimara.
He served in Germany with 1st Regiment
in 1962 and 1963 as Troop Commander of a Transportation Troop
and during this period was promoted to Captain.
On returning to Malta he was appointed
Adjutant of 11th Regiment RMA (T) which was a territorial (Reservist)
Regiment. In 1996 he was again posted to Germany this time of
Staff Duties at Regimental Headquarters.
In 1968 he as appointed as Aide-de-Camp
to the Governor General of Malta, Sir Maurice Dorman who was then
the Sovereign's representative on the Island, and was promoted
to Major in 1969. Major Gaffiero continued with his duties as
Aide-de-Camp until 1985 during which period he served the last
two Governors-General and the first three Presidents of the Republic
of Malta. On the 27th of May 1985 he was promoted to the rank
of Lieutenant Colonel, posted to the Task Force on the Commander's
Staff. On 11th May 1988 after the re-amalgamation of the Task
Force and the Armed Forces of Malta, he was given command of 1st
Regiment, the largest unit in the Armed Forces of Malta which
contained most of the combatant elements. On 1st December 1991
he was promoted to colonel and was appointed Deputy Commander
of the Armed Forces of Malta on 9th March 1992.
Gaffiero is also the Commander of the St. John's Ambulance Brigade,
an organisation which has been established in Malta for over 100
years and which provides a uniformed corps of 600 volunteer members
who are trained for deployment on First-Aid and Rescue duties.
PRESENTATION OF 3.7 INCH H.A.A.
Four 3.7 inch H.A.A. guns were presented
to Malta on the 1st of June 1992. The guns were presented as
a tribute to fallen comrades, by Stanley Fraser who served with
the 4th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment, RA during the siege.
The Armed Forces of Malta Guard of
Honour and Band marched on parade. Since then the guns have been
on display on the parade ground, at Luqa Barracks. These are
being looked after like all other Military weapons
Send any questions or problems regarding
this service to the administrator.
last modified: January 2010