16 Apr 2007

PR# 2007-310

Helmand Province showing signs of growth due to increasing security

HELMAND, Afghanistan - As the security and stability of Helmand Province begins to improve, as a result of Operation Achilles, Afghan construction workers and ISAF military construction engineers have started to work together to improve the quality of life for the people of Helmand Province.

“Many of the recent construction projects in Helmand have focused on building the infrastructure needed to strengthen the improved security conditions now in place,” stated Lieutenant Colonel Charlie Mayo, ISAF’s Task Force Helmand Spokesperson.

These infrastructure projects include Afghan National Army Patrol Bases being constructed in Sangin and the 18 new permanent security check points being constructed across Helmand.

In districts such as Lashkar Gah, Now Zad and Garmsir, local Afghans have started seeing the benefits of a safer environment. Working together, Afghans and ISAF military construction engineers have worked together on recent projects to improve the irrigation of farmland by channelling the flow of the Helmand River.

Together, ISAF and local villagers have also helped improve roadways through the countryside, towns and bazaars.

“When local communities tell us their needs, ISAF engineers draw up plans; however, it is ordinary Afghan construction companies who are responsible for the completion of projects and they employ local Afghans to do the work. In this manner, local Afghans are rebuilding their country and being paid for their efforts,” stated Lieutenant Colonel Mayo.

“Two hospitals and health centres have benefited from a range of repair work including the installation of a new generator which was made possible through this co-operation,” added Lieutenant Colonel Mayo.

Even children in Helmand Province are seeing the benefits of a more secure province with the construction of new schools, numerous repairs on existing schools and the creation of new parks and playgrounds.

Contact Information ISAF Public Affairs Office
Tel: +93 (0)799 51 1155 - Mobile: 0093 (0) 799 55 8291 pressoffice@hq.isaf.nato.int - www.nato.int/isaf/