03 Jun. 2009
PR# 2009-399

ISAF saving Afghan lives

KABUL, Afghanistan - International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) air and medical support personnel are working hard to save lives in Afghanistan.

The evacuation and medical care of casualties sustained during Afghan National Security Force (ANSF) and ISAF engagements with insurgents is a top priority for ISAF.

In 2008, 1,925 ANSF wounded were evacuated and cared for by ISAF air and medical assets. This commitment to supporting security forces has continued in 2009, with 737 ANSF wounded transported to medical facilities for treatment by ISAF medics.

The insurgent’s emplacement of deadly IEDs, and their strategy of engaging security forces in close proximity to the homes of Afghans, significantly contributes to civilian injuries that require medical assistance. Tragically, casualties sustained when security forces confront insurgents also include innocent Afghans.

However, eighty percent of all civilian casualties are caused by the insurgency.

While the insurgents persist in tactics that indiscriminately kill and injure innocent Afghans, ISAF and local security forces work to prevent and treat all casualties. Unlike the insurgents ISAF and ANSF are determined to honour their commitment to the people of Afghanistan.

So far in 2009, ISAF has assisted 747 Afghan civilians who sustained conflict related injuries. ISAF always helps wounded Afghan civilians with immediate first aid, followed by evacuation to medical facilities where injuries are treated by highly skilled doctors and nurses.

Also, ISAF air and medical personnel often risk their lives to ensure that wounded Afghan civilians are evacuated to safety. The same cannot be said for the insurgents, who continue to ignore the safety and medical needs of innocent Afghans caught in conflict zones.

Importantly, ISAF also ensures that medical care is extended to wounded insurgents, without prejudice.

ISAF is in Afghanistan to provide support to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GIRoA) and ANSF to ensure the safety and security of all Afghans.

ISAF air and medical equipment and personnel are vital assets used to help the Afghans and security forces unfortunately wounded in pursuit of this goal.

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/