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Two Aussie Soldiers Wounded In Oruzgan IED Blast

Two Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) Soldiers Wounded In Oruzgan IED Blast

Two Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) soldiers are receiving specialist medical care for wounds suffered in an improvised explosive device (IED) blast in Oruzgan province early yesterday morning.

The soldiers were travelling in a SOTG Bushmaster vehicle at the time of the incident.

Defence spokesperson Brigadier Brian Dawson said one soldier was seriously wounded in the attack while the other suffered only slight wounds as a result of the IED blast. Neither of the soldiers suffered life-threatening wounds.

"The soldiers were provided with combat first aid by other members of the SOTG to stabilise their condition and the area surrounding the blast site was secured in preparation for a helicopter casualty evacuation," Brigadier Dawson said.

"On arrival at the site, an ISAF MEDEVAC helicopter was damaged in a 'hard landing' rendering it incapable of completing its casualty evacuation task."

Brigadier Dawson said a second stand-by MEDEVAC helicopter based in Kandahar was unable to launch due to bad weather conditions.

The Australian casualties were evacuated to a nearby ISAF medical centre in a helicopter that had been retasked to support the incident.

An Australian soldier travelling in the initial MEDEVAC helicopter suffered slight injuries as a result of the hard landing and is also receiving medical treatment.

The damaged helicopter was secured by the Australian force until it was extracted from the incident site by an ISAF CH-47 Chinook. The damaged Bushmaster has also been recovered safely to Tarin Kowt.

There is no indication that the initial helicopter was attacked by Taliban extremists.

The two wounded soldiers and the soldier injured in the helicopter 'hard landing' have informed their families of their condition.

MEDIA NOTE:

SOTG operations are ongoing and no further detail on the incident will be released at this time. As the MEDEVAC helicopter is not an Australian aircraft Defence will not comment further on the possible cause, damage sustained or any air safety investigation. Inquiries about the MEDEVAC incident should be directed to ISAF.

ENDS

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