Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

May 17, 2006 15:54 ET

Department of National Defence: Canadian Soldier Killed in Afghanistan

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - May 17, 2006) - A Canadian soldier was killed during a firefight with insurgents that occurred approximately 24 kilometres west of Kandahar. The incident occurred at approximately 6:55 p.m. Kandahar time (10: 25 a.m. EDT) on 17 May.

Killed was Captain Nichola Kathleen Sarah Goddard who was serving with Task Force Afghanistan as part of the 1st Battalion Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry (1 PPCLI) Battle Group. Captain Goddard was stationed with the 1st Regiment Royal Canadian Horse Artillery in Shilo, Manitoba; her next-of-kin have been notified.

The repatriation of Captain Goddard's remains is now being planned.

Capt Goddard was engaged in a significant operation, one in which Canadian soldiers were in support of Afghan authorities, when she was killed. That operation was a clearance operation by Afghan security personnel in Kandahar province north of the Arghandab River and west of Kandahar City.

Canadian Forces, in cooperation with the Government of Afghanistan, assist Afghan security forces in the conduct of these operations to rid the region of those insurgents seeking to destabilize the security situation in which the Afghan people live and raise their families.

The Afghan security forces, assisted by Canadians, are succeeding. Preliminary results of this contact indicate that a significant number of Taliban were killed in this action.

Canada's mission in Afghanistan is part of our contribution to the international campaign to help bring stability and security to the people of Afghanistan. The overarching goal is to help the Afghan people achieve peace by preventing their nation from relapsing into a failed state that gives terrorist and terrorist organizations a safe haven.

There are significant risks involved in these operations, but Canadian Forces members are among the best trained, and most experienced soldiers in the world. We are achieving results - we are assisting the Afghan authorities to achieve the results necessary to bring security and stability to this region. And Capt Goddard's death was the price today of ensuring that tens of thousands of men, women and children of Afghanistan can have hope that their future will be brighter.

NOTE TO EDITOR:

A photograph of Captain Goddard is available on the Combat Camera website (search under her last name) at: http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca

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