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August 30, Lithuanian troops drove over an identified type of explosive device during a night patrol in Ghor just several kilometres away from the Lithuanian-led PRT camp. Personnel did not suffer injures in the explosion; the military truck is out of service.

Afghan National Security Forces were informed about the event. Investigation is opened to identify the explosive.

„Lithuanian troops conducted a usual patrol around Chaghcharan as an ordinary means of ensuring security of the PRT camp. According to our estimation, it was an improvised explosive device, and more exact assessment will come after the investigation”, said Commander PRT-11 Col Gintaras Smaliukas.

The personnel from the patrol have returned to the camp, underwent medical examination and consulted with military chaplain. None of them was injured in the incident.

„The incident justified the decision of equipping PRT with armoured trucks. The vehicle’s armour saved Lithuanian troops from physical harm during this night’s explosion”, commented Chief of Defence Staff BrigGen Algis Vaičeliūnas after the incident.

At the moment the 11th rotation of the Lithuanian-led PRT serve in Afghanistan, the shift is based on the Lithuanian Grand Duke Kęstutis Motorised Infantry Battalion located in Tauragės Distr. Kęstutis Battalion provides personnel for the PRT mission for a second time. The majority of personnel in the shift have been deployed to multinational missions in the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan previously.

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Representatives of Denmark, Georgia, Japan, USA, Poland, Finland and Ukraine serve together with Lithuanian military and civilian personnel in Ghor PRT camp in Chaghcharan.

The Lithuanian-led PRT in Ghor is a joint civilian-military mission, a part of NATO’s ISAF, that was launched in Ghor in summer of 2005. The main task of the mission is to help Government of Afghanistan to extend authority in the province, ensure security and create environment for provincial reconstruction.

Prerequisites for the allied forces deployed in Afghanistan to finish the mission will be provided as soon as the country’s National Security Forces are able to ensure security of the country and its people independently. In the present period major attention is paid to the projects of training and preparation of Afghan National Security Forces in the framework of the new NATO ISAF strategy in Afghanistan.

Ghor, located in the central part of Afghanistan, is relatively safe because of its geographical position and underdeveloped infrastructure. However, insurgent movement is sometimes spotted there as well as Ghor has borders with southern provinces, guarded by additional huge deployment of allied forces since the beginning of 2010. As the Lithuanian-led PRT of Ghor increases its attention to training Afghan National Security Forces, establishment of Police Operational Mentoring and Liaison Team (POMLT) is planned in Ghor by the end of the year.

PIO for PRT-11 Capt Darius Toleikis

Source: kam.lt