Update on Afghan Child Hurt During Operation in Afghanistan
7 December 2011
A five year old Afghan child who was bitten by an Australian search dog is expected to make a full recovery.
The child was discovered with a deep laceration to his leg immediately following a compound clearance in eastern Uruzgan Province last month.
The search dog entered the compound after civilians who had vacated the building advised the SOTG force element that the compound was clear of people.
Acting Chief of Joint Operations, Read Admiral David Johnston said Defence has now finalised its review of the incident and determined that, while highly regrettable and unfortunate, the force element was operating within approved procedures.
“Our review of the incident sought to understand how the child was injured and whether the appropriate procedures had been employed at that time,” Rear Admiral Johnston said.
“The officer who conducted the post-incident assessment determined that approved and correct tactics, techniques and procedures were employed during the compound clearance.
"This assessment has been endorsed by senior ADF commanders in the Middle East.”
On discovering the injured child, a medic provided immediate first aid before the force element evacuated the child and his mother by aero-medical helicopter to the medical facility at MNB-TK for further treatment.
The child and his mother were subsequently moved to the advanced medical facility at Kandahar Airfield for specialist treatment.
The child was discharged from care on 15 November and both the child and his mother have returned to their home.
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