Aussie, New Zealand soldiers wounded in ‘insider’ Afghan attack

Courier Mail — Oct 26, 2013

AN AUSTRALIAN and New Zealand soldier have been wounded in an “insider attack” after an Afghan soldier opened fire during a meeting in northern Afghanistan.

Australian soldiers returned fire and shot the Afghan National Security Force soldier, the Defence Department said in a statement.

It’s not clear if the Afghan soldier was killed, Defence says, however, news agencies report he was shot dead.

The attack happened on Saturday morning in the Qargha region near Kabul as Australian soldiers were meeting with trainee Afghan officers.

Australian and other ISAF personnel are helping train and skill those attending the Afghan National Army Officer Academy there.

The New Zealand soldier was wounded in the initial attack, with reports saying he was shot in the leg, while the Australian suffered minor fragmentation wounds while providing protection. He is expected to return to duty shortly.

Acting Chief of the Defence Force, Air Marshal Mark Binskin, says others could have been hit if not for the quick response of Australian soldiers at the meeting.

“From initial reporting, it would appear that our soldiers reacted promptly and professionally, potentially saving any other ISAF or Afghan personnel from sustaining wounds or worse,” Air Marshal Binskin said.

“It is impossible to completely remove the threat of insider attacks, but the actions of the ADF Force Protection soldiers demonstrate that our training and force protection techniques are appropriate and prepared to respond, when incidents such as this occur.”

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