Fisbourne naval lawyer honoured for work in Afghan operations

Commander Joe Turner
Commander Joe Turner

A naval lawyer who spent six months in Afghanistan advising senior commanders and fighting units has been recognised with a Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service.

Commander Joe Turner, 44, who lives in Fishbourne, was an operational lawyer at the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Joint Command, on the outskirts of Kabul.

He was there to advise on international law, including the Law of Armed Conflict, relating to combat operations in Afghanistan.

Joe, who has three children and is married to Lorna, was honoured when he heard about the award on the recent Operational Honours List.

He said: “I worked in a large multi-national HQ which was a very far cry, geographically and in terms of the threat, from those on the front line, but my aim throughout was simply to enable them to do as much as possible – within the law – in pressing the fight to the enemy.

“I am obviously very pleased to have the award, but would pay tribute, above all, to those who were much more in harm’s way, especially those killed or injured while I was out there, and also to my wife Lorna for her fantastic good humour, support and for looking after the kids so well single-handedly while I was away.”

Joe has been in the Royal Navy for 25 years and served in the Gulf as operational maritime legal adviser in 2003.

He currently works in the Navy Command HQ in Portsmouth, where he is the fleet legal adviser.