Obverse: A representation of the effigy of the Sovereign.

Reverse: The inscription “THE NEW ZEALAND GENERAL SERVICE MEDAL” within a wreath of New Zealand flora (fern fronds, pohutukawa, and kowhai blossom) ensigned by a Royal Crown.

Size: 36mm in diameter.

Ribbon: 32mm wide. It has a central stripe of red with a narrow stripe of yellow and a broad stripe of light blue on either side. Light blue and yellow were the colours of the ribbon of the British Korea Medal awarded for service by Commonwealth forces during the Korean War of 1950-1953. Light blue also alludes to the United Nations. Red and blue are used in the flags of the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Suspension: By a plain straight suspender.

Instituted on 5th September, 2008, this silver medal was awarded to recognise New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel who have served in the Republic of Korea with the United Nations Command Military Armistice Commission (UNCMAC) or the United Nations Command Honour Guard Company since 1 January 2001. At the time the medal was instituted, more than 40 NZDF personnel had qualified for the award of the NZGSM 2002 (Korea).

The personnel recognised by these medals have worked to maintain military stability between the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Approximately half of the people eligible have monitored military activity in the Demilitarised Zone and in other parts of the Korean peninsula where they have investigated alleged violations of the Korean Armistice Agreement. The 23 Honour Guard Company personnel provided personal security for the UNC Commander-in-Chief in 2001 and 2003.

In the regulations, Korea means:-
(a) the territories of the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea; and
(b) the territorial seas that the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea are entitled to establish under Part II of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea; and
(c) the superjacent airspace above the territories and territorial seas of the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

A person is eligible for the medal if he or she :-
(a) served in Korea on or after 1 January 2001 as a member of, or in connection with, a New Zealand Government contribution to United Nations Command activities involving the preservation of the Korean Armistice Agreement; and
(b) was, at that time, a member of the New Zealand Defence Force (within the meaning of the Defence Act 1990).

Qualifying service
An eligible person is qualified for the award of the medal if the person was engaged in service:-
(a) for 30 days or more, continuous or aggregated; or
(b) for less than 30 days, but-
(i) the service was terminated by death or evacuation owing to wounds or disability caused by that service; or
(ii) the person has been given a New Zealand Royal Honour for gallantry or bravery for acts while engaged in that service; or
(iii) the mission directive stated that the deployment was to be longer than 30 days, but the person had his or her period of service terminated after less than 30 days at the direction of the New Zealand Government department or agency that deployed the person, and the termination was for official reasons rather than for personal, compassionate, or disciplinary reasons.

Royal Warrant For This Award: View Warrant (PDF document)

Regulations For This Award: View Regulations (PDF document)