Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

July 13, 2007 19:15 ET

DND: A-10A Friendly Fire Board of Inquiry Findings Released

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 13, 2007) - Lieutenant-General Michel Gauthier, Commander Canadian Expeditionary Force Command (CEFCOM), released today the findings from the A-10A Friendly Fire Incident Board of Inquiry (BOI) that investigated the September 4, 2006, events during which a USAF aircraft opened fire on Canadian troops. This incident resulted in the death of Private Mark Anthony Graham and injuries to several other Canadian soldiers serving with Charles Company group, Royal Canadian Regiment, Joint Task Force - Afghanistan (JTF-Afg).

"Members of the Board of Inquiry produced a thorough report with recommendations which, I am convinced, will help safeguard the lives of our soldiers in the future", said General Rick Hillier, Chief of the Defence Staff. "Risk is inherent to military operations, however we must always seek to mitigate it." This BOI also received the full cooperation from US military authorities, specifically from the Commander of Ninth Air Force, Lieutenant-General Gary L. North, his staff, and US Central Command (CENTCOM). "We are grateful for their great collaboration in aiding this BOI," he added.

A BOI is an administrative inquiry normally convened to examine and report on complex or significant events. It serves to determine what occurred, how and why it occurred and proposes measures that might prevent the possibility of recurrence. It is not a criminal investigation.

A summary of the A-10A Friendly Fire BOI findings and a statement from Lieutenant-General Gauthier, Commander CEFCOM, the convening authority for the BOI, are available at http://www.forces.gc.ca/site/focus/opmedusa/index_e.asp .

Notes to Editors and News Directors:

1. Portions of the BOI final report have been severed out in accordance with Access to Information regulations to protect the operational security of our men and women serving in Afghanistan. However the key elements of the report remains and tells the story of what happened that morning.

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