He attended a special event alongside members of the military in the grounds of Cardiff Castle to mark the occasion. 2012 is the 60th anniversary of the Welch Regiment’s (now part of The Royal Welsh) involvement in the Korean War and the 30th anniversary of the Falklands conflict where the Welsh Guards played a prominent role.
During the event in Cardiff there was a parade and the rededication of the South Atlantic Medal Association memorial in Alexandra Park. The First Minister gave a reading during the drum head service.
The celebrations were one of many taking place across the UK for Armed Forces Day, the first of which took place in 2009 to recognise those who have served and continue to serve in the armed forces.
Flagship events were held in both north and south Wales with the support of £20,000 from the Welsh Government.
The Welsh Government is committed to increasing the support for the armed forces community in Wales and has published a package of measures. These include extending eligibility for the concessionary travel scheme and extending free swimming schemes to veterans and serving military personnel on leave.
The First Minister said:
"Today is about saying thank you to the members of the armed forces for the work they do in our name. Armed Forces Day is an opportunity for all of us to show our appreciation and to recognise the professionalism, commitment and sacrifice our service men and women endure.
"The Welsh Government is doing all it can to support the armed forces community here in Wales by working to ensure that serving personnel, their families and veterans can access services which meet their specific needs."