A Fort Hood unit will be heading to Europe next year.

The 504th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade will deploy 500 soldiers to Kosovo in early 2014, III Corps officials announced Tuesday.

The task force will replace the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade out of Fort Bragg, N.C., in the Multinational Battle Group-East’s mission of peace support operations in the region.

The Fort Bragg brigade was the first active-duty Army unit to deploy to Kosovo in a decade to assist with NATO peacekeeping. The last unit to deploy to the region was the 1st Infantry Division in 2002-2003.

Since the late 1990s war in Kosovo, the southeastern European country has dealt with ethnic strife between its Albanian and Serbian populations, as well as geographic pressures from neighboring countries, including Yugoslavia.

The Kosovo Force, established in 1999, works to support Kosovo’s peaceful development following the war. During the 2000s, National Guard and reserve units worked in the country to maintain peace.

The Fort Hood brigade will assist the United Nations and the European Union in continuing to ensure a stable, multiethnic, democratic country, III Corps officials said.

Currently, the Multinational Battle Group-East consists of 1,500 troops from eight nations: Armenia, France, Germany, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

The 504th, based at West Fort Hood, last deployed in 2012 to Afghanistan, said Staff Sgt. Gregory Sanders, a brigade public affairs officer. Currently, two battalions within the brigade remain in Afghanistan.

National Guard, reserve troops and Fort Hood’s 11th Public Affairs Detachment will deploy alongside the 504th next year.

Contact Madison Lozano​ at mlozano@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7552.

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