Lt. Tesnor W. Ted, 25, leader of Haiti's new national military force, points as he gathers his fellow recruits for the start of a ceremony, in the farming village of Petite Rivere de L'Aritibonite, Haiti, Sept. 16, 2013.
Haiti has taken steps toward rebuilding its military, which was abolished in 1995.
At a ceremony Monday, Defense Minister Jean-Rodolphe Joazile greeted the first 41 recruits of the new armed forces after they returned from eight months of training in Ecuador. They will be the first members of a national military force that the government of President Michel Martelly is intent on restoring.
The recruits will work alongside Ecuadoran military engineers in central Haiti to repair roads and work on other public service projects.
The 41 recruits are made up of 30 soldiers, 10 engineers and one officer. They will report to the Defense Ministry but will not carry weapons.
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