Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

July 31, 2006 15:59 ET

National Defence: Canadian Peacekeeper Confirmed Dead

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - July 31, 2006) - The remains of a Canadian United Nations Military Observer, Major Paeta Hess-von Kruedener, were conclusively identified after being recovered from the ruins of the UN observation post located in the Khiyam area of Southern Lebanon.

He was listed as missing and presumed dead following the incident.

The UN confirmed by forensic examination that Maj. Hess-von Kruedener was one of the three UN observers recovered from the post following the incident. A Canadian forensic pathologist and coroner contracted by the Canadian Forces participated in the forensic examination.

Maj. Hess-von Kruedener, an Infantry Officer with the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry had been serving in the area with the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) since October 2005. The UNTSO mandate in the area is to assist the parties in supervising the application and observance of General Armistice Agreements concluded separately between Israel and Egypt, Lebanon, Jordon and Syria. Canada's contribution to this mission is called Operation Jade. Major Hess-Von Kruedener was one of seven Canadian peacekeepers supporting Operation Jade.

The repatriation of his remains is now being planned; further details will be released as they become available.

The UN has called for an investigation into the circumstances surrounding this tragic incident, a call that is fully supported by the Government of Canada.

NOTE TO EDITOR:

A photograph of Maj. Hess-von Kruedener is available on the Combat Camera website (search under his last name) at: http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca

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