Significant risk in Afghan missions as Canadian soldier dies in Kabul blast

This article was last updated on April 16, 2022

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PM Stephen Harper admits the high risk involved in NATO training mission after a Canadian soldier passed away on Saturday. Master Corporal Byron Greff along with 16 others part of the NATO training mission were reported dead in a suicide bomb attack in Kabul.

Greff is the first Canadian soldier who died in Afghanistan after the end of military operations in July. PM Harper offered his condolences to Greff’s loved ones.

He said: “I’ve always been clear there are still risks involved in this mission. Any mission in Afghanistan involves significant risk. … Any presence in Afghanistan, as I know from my own travel there, is fraught with risk, so there will remain risk to our defence personnel.”

On the other hand, skeptics believe PM Harper calculatedly understated the risk involved in the training operation in turn to evade Parliamentary debate.

Michael Byers, a political-science professor at University of British Columbia and former NDP candidate said: “It’s not as if the Canadian government didn’t have due warning that losses would occur. But the majority of Canadians were against the extension of the mission and portraying it as a non-combat mission enabled the Prime Minister to argue that no parliamentary debate was required.

“I believe that in a democracy we need to have these debates and they need to be based on the full range of information that is available.”

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