11 February 2011
Members of the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team (NZPRT) have provided support following a tragic incident where one Afghan child was killed and another seriously injured by unexploded ordnance (UXO) in Afghanistan on Wednesday.
The incident was brought to the attention of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel when local nationals came to the gate of their patrol base in the North East of Bamyan Province, and requested assistance.
The injured child was treated by an NZDF medic before being airlifted with his father by ISAF to the hospital at Bagram Airforce Base.
The UXO was in a weapons range used by the NZDF and local Afghan National Police in the North East of Bamyan Province. Local police have completed an initial investigation, and the NZDF are investigating the incident to determine the facts surrounding it. The dangerous nature of the range area is well known to the locals. The NZPRT and local elders have repeatedly explained this danger, especially to the local children.
The NZDF has Explosive Ordnance Disposal personnel with the NZPRT and Afghans often advise the NZPRT where to find UXO so they can be disposed of.
The funeral for the deceased has been conducted by family members. The NZPRT has expressed condolences to the family and hopes for a quick recovery of the injured child.
Contact Nicole Munro, Defence Communications Group, 021 569 148