Joint operation incident under investigation by Defence

THE Defence Force is investigating an "incident of potential misconduct" during a joint operation between the Afghan National Security Forces and Australia's Special Operations Task Group in Afghanistan last month.

A statement from the Department of Defence confirmed the investigation was under way into the April 28, 2013, mission, which targeted an insurgent commander in Zabul province.

Defence Force Chief General David Hurley said the insurgent commander was "responsible for a key insurgent network operating in and around Uruzgan province".

"During the course of clearing the targeted area, the force element positively identified several armed insurgents moving to gain a tactical advantage and due to the threat posed, the combined ANSF and SOTG force element engaged and killed four insurgents," he said.

"An incident of potential misconduct during the operation has been raised through the internal national command chain."

The investigation was under way in co-operation with the International Security Assistance Force, and Defence was not making any further comment until the investigation was completed.


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