In Uruzgan is dinsdag een 25-jarige Australische commando gesneuveld. Tijdens een patrouille werd het voertuig waarin hij zich bevond getroffen door een IED (Improvised Explosive Device). Drie andere inzittenden (twee Australiërs en een militair van onbekende nationaliteit) raakten gewond. Van een van hen zou de situatie ernstig zijn. Het dodelijke slachtoffer is Signaller Sean McCarthy, lid van het elitecorps Special Air Service (SAS). Een eenheid van dit corps vormt samen met commando’s van de Australische Landmacht de Special Operations Task Group die in Uruzgan opereert ter ondersteuning van ISAF.
UPDATE: Volgens de Australische krant The Age is een van de gewonden een Amerikaanse militair, een andere krant spreekt van een Afghaanse militair.
UPDATE 2: over de plaats van de aanslag is nog niets bekend gemaakt. Een mogelijke indicatie is de onderstaande claim die namens de Taliban is gepubliceerd. Weliswaar wordt daarin gesproken van een ‘Hollandse tank’, maar dergelijke slordigheden in de details komen in dit soort claims wel vaker voor.
1 tank of Holland invaders blown up in Uruzgan Tuesday morning 08-07-2008 at approximately 11 am local time, Mujahideen of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, with remote controlled landmine blew up a tank of Holland occupation army when it was patrolling in Kala area of Chora district of Uruzgan province. In the explosion the tank was completely destroyed and all the invader terrorists in it were killed. Reported by Qari Muhammad Yousuf
09/07/2008 CPA 211/08
SPECIAL OPERATIONS SOLDIER KILLED – THREE WOUNDED
An Australian soldier serving with the Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) in Afghanistan has been killed in a road-side bomb attack in Afghanistan.
Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus (ACM) Houston said the soldier was killed Tuesday afternoon (AEST) when Australian soldiers were conducting a patrol in southern Afghanistan.
“Signaller Sean McCarthy, who was 25 years of age and from the Perth based Special Air Service Regiment, was killed yesterday afternoon when the vehicle he was travelling in was struck by a road-side bomb,” Air Chief Marshal Houston said.
Two other Australian soldiers were also wounded by the Improvised Explosive Device (IED). Their condition is assessed as serious but stable. Due to the nature of wounds, a medical assessment has not yet been concluded to determine whether they will be required to return to Australia for further medical treatment.
In accordance with Defence policy, their names will not be released.
A third Coalition national who was working with the Australian patrol was also wounded in the IED strike. His condition is assessed as serious but not life threatening. He is currently being treated at a medical facility in Afghanistan. Defence will not provide further information on this person.
The wounded soldiers and Coalition national along with the body of Signaller McCarthy were immediately evacuated by helicopter to a medical facility at Tarin Kowt.
ACM Houston said repatriation planning for Signaller McCarthy’s body has begun.
“This is a tragic day for the ADF and, on behalf of the entire Defence Organisation I extend my deepest sympathies to the family, colleagues and friends of Signaller McCarthy. At times like these we need to be strong and to offer our full support to his family and friends. Our best wishes are also with the wounded soldiers in the hope that they make a speedy recovery.”
ACM Houston said he also expressed his best wishes to the Coalition national who was also wounded in the attack.
Defence has notified the immediate families of all soldiers involved and is providing assistance to them during this very difficult time.
“Our soldiers continue to acquit themselves magnificently. However, due to the nature of special operations, no further details can be released at this time,” Air Chief Marshal Houston said.
Signaller McCarthy’s death marks the sixth fatality since Australia commenced operations in Afghanistan in 2002.
A copy of Signaller Sean McCarthy’s biography and picture will be available from the Defence website.
Information on the ADF’s commitment to Afghanistan can be found at: http://www.defence.gov.au/opslipper/default.htm