Iraq Medal (2004 - 2011)

Era: 2003 - 2011

The Iraq Medal was a campaign medal for issue to Officers and Other Ranks of the British Armed Forces, and others, who served on, or in support of, Operation TELIC - the designation for British operations during the 2003 Invasion of Iraq and its aftermath.

The Ministry of Defence announced on 23rd February 2004 the qualifying criteria for the campaign medal recognising service during Operation Telic. The Iraq Medal marks service in, and in support of, operations in Iraq from 20th January 2003, and can be awarded to UK Armed Forces and civilian personnel, including embedded media, and certain foreign nationals assigned to the operation.

Service personnel and MOD civilians who died during their service in Kuwait or Iraq automatically qualify for posthumous award of the medal. Personnel who served on the operation between 19th March and 28th April 2003 may also qualify for a clasp, inscribed "19 MAR - 28 APR 2003" to be worn on the medal ribbon. The area of operations has been divided into Zone One (Iraq and Kuwait) and Zone Two (elsewhere in the Gulf region in support of the operation) for determining eligibility.

Description:

Materials:       The majority of the British medals and clasps are made of solid silver, though some were issue in bronze versions, mainly to Indian non-combatants.  The majority of the British campaign awards are circular, usually 36mm in diameter.

Ribbons:          Medals are worn suspended from their own specific ribbons. These were first made of silk but cotton was increasingly used as the nineteenth century developed.  Their own colours often have a symbolic significance: the equal stripes of the ‘1939 to 1945 Star,’ for example, are dark blue to represent the service of the Royal and Merchant Navies, red, to represent that of the Armies and light blue to represent that of Air Forces.

Ribbon width can vary slightly though it is generally 32mm wide.

Ribbon - 32mm, sand coloured ribbon with three narrow central stripes of black, white, and red representing the national colours of the Iraqi flag.

A ribbon emblem (silver rosette) has been issued to denote the award of the bar. (for when the ribbon alone is worn)

Iraq Medal ribbon
Iraq Medal ribbon

Type – Campaign medal

Eligibility – British Forces.

Awarded for – Campaign Service.

Campaign – Iraq 2003 – 2011

Description – Cupro nickel disk, 36mm dia.

Established – 23 February 2004

Suspender – Straight

Naming – Capital letters engraved with laser to achieve a uniform sans-serif naming.

Clasps – 19th Mar to 28th Apr 2003.

Struck in cupro – nickel, 36mm diameter with a swivelling suspender.  The obverse depicts the crowed head of Queen Elizabeth II with the legend “ELIZABETH II DIE GRATIA REGINA FID. DEF”. The reverse depicts the ancient Assyrian Lamussu with “IRAQ” under.

Clasps:

Clasps are commonly, though not strictly correctly, also referred to as ‘bars’.  They are single-faced metal bars carried on a ribbon attached to the medal, indicating service in a particular campaign or battle.  The clasps carry side flanges to enable them to be attached to the medal and riveted to each other, so that new ones can be attached as earned.  Usually the first earned Clasp is borne nearest to the medal, so that the latest earned should be at the top, though they can be found in the wrong order. 

The qualifying periods of service are:

Campaign Medal with Clasp "19 MAR - 28 APR 2003":

Zone One (Iraq and Kuwait) - 7 days continuous service during period 19 March 2003 to 28 April 2003

Aircrew based outside but flying two or more sorties into Zone One during period 19 March 2003 to 28 April 2003

Campaign Medal without Clasp:

Personnel in Zone One (Iraq) not completing 7 days service during period 19 March 2003 to 28 April 2003, but with 30 days continuous service between 20 January 2003 and 24 March 2003, or 30 days continuous service from 23 April 2003 to a date to be notified.

Personnel in Zone One (Kuwait) not completing 7 days service during period 19 March 2003 to 28 April 2003, but with 30 days continuous service between 20 January 2003 and 24 March 2003, or 30 days continuous service from 23 April 2003 to 10 August 2003.

Personnel with 30 days continuous service in Zone Two between 20 January 2003 and 28 April 2003.

Aircrew based outside both Zones One and Two but with 30 sorties flown into the Zones at a rate of not more than one per day, during the period 20 January 2003 to 28 April 2003.

Aircrew based outside of Iraq but flying 10 sorties into Iraq from 28 April 2003 to a date to be notified, at a rate of not more than one per day.

 

Sources:

< gov.uk/medals-campaigns-descriptions-and-eligibility>

Some of the material on this page was also partially derived from

<en.wikipedia.org/wiki Iraq_Medal_(United_Kingdom)/ >

Which are released under the terms of

Creativecommons.org/licenses/by-s/3.0/.

 

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