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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 194-02
April 18, 2002

RUMSFELD STATEMENT ON FRIENDLY FIRE INCIDENT NEAR KANDAHAR

On behalf of the Department of Defense, I want to express my deep regret and sadness over the tragic accident in Afghanistan that killed and wounded a number of Canadian troops. Our thoughts and prayers go out to them, their comrades, and their families.

President Bush last night spoke with Prime Minister Jean Chretien to convey his sorrow at the tragic loss of life and to reassert our country's appreciation for Canada's strong commitment to the war on terrorism.

I have discussed this matter with Canadian Minister of Defense Eggleton and assured him that Gen. Tommy Franks and his Central Command staff will work closely with the Canadian representatives in Tampa to investigate the causes of this tragic accident.

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