27 Feb. 2009
PR# 2009-197

Civilian injured during escalation of force incident near Sangin bazaar

KABUL, Afghanistan - International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) injured a local man during an escalation of force incident 22 February.

A combined Afghan National Army (ANA) and ISAF security patrol was moving through Sangin District Centre 22 February, and as the patrol passed under the Sangin Flyover it was attacked by a suicide bomber detonating his device directly in their path.

ANA and ISAF forces acted immediately to protect civilians as they established a security cordon around the area, ensuring no further danger was present.

Once the perimeter had been established a man on a motorbike road directly towards the joint patrol and ignored verbal warnings to stop. The patrol followed ISAF escalation of force procedures and flares were fired, followed by warning shots.

Despite warnings, the motorcyclist continued to breach the established perimeter. Believing they were at risk from a secondary suicide attack, ISAF troops fired aimed shots and hit the man who then fell from his bike, rendering the situation safe. He was taken to an ISAF base close to Sangin District Centre where he received immediate medical treatment for his wounds.

ISAF regrets any injuries caused to civilians. It is mandatory for all ISAF forces to receive extensive training in escalation of force procedures in order to prevent civilian casualties, whilst at the same time taking appropriate action to protect themselves when threatened.

"This was an unfortunate incident that occurred soon after an attack by a suicide bomber", said Commander Paula Rowe, Spokesperson for Task Force Helmand. "The joint patrol was understandably concerned about a second attack and remained vigilant. They took the appropriate action in accordance with their training".

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/