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Minister expresses sympathy for the loss of Signaller McCarthy.

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Minister for Defence Media Mail List -----------------------------------------------------------------------


THE HON. JOEL FITZGIBBON MP Minister for Defence

Wednesday, 9 July 2008 080/2008


The Minister for Defence, the Hon Joel Fitzgibbon MP, expressed his condolences to the family, colleagues and friends of Signaller Sean McCarthy, who was killed in Afghanistan.

Signaller McCarthy was killed when the vehicle he was travelling in was hit by a roadside bomb.

“This is a tragic day for the Australian Defence Force and, on behalf of the Government I extend my deepest sympathies to the family, colleagues and friends of Signaller McCarthy,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“I also extend my sympathies to the dedicated men and women of the Australian Defence Force who served with Signaller McCarthy.”

Two other Australian soldiers were wounded and evacuated to a nearby medical facility for treatment.

“Our thoughts and best wishes are with those soldiers. We hope they make a speedy recovery,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

Mr Fitzgibbon said the tragic loss of Signaller McCarthy is a reminder to us all of the dangers and challenges faced in this vital mission.

“We should make no mistake that this is a vital mission. It is the presence and sacrifice of the men and women of the Australian Defence Force that demonstrates that the Taliban can never again be allowed to use Afghanistan as a training ground and as a hiding place for terrorists,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“The men and women of the Australian Defence Force are taking the fight to this enemy. They are disrupting, destroying and displacing those that would seek to return Afghanistan to the medieval bastion of tyranny and terror it was under the Taliban.

“They are the people who risk their lives everyday in the service of this noble and hard fought aspiration. They deserve the respect and thanks of this Government and of the people of Australia.

“As they carry out this vital work today, it is with Signaller McCarthy’s family and the men and women of the Australian Defence Force that all Australians feel the loss of a comrade fallen in the pursuit of this mission,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

Media contacts: Jack Smith (Joel Fitzgibbon): 02 6277 7800 or 0408 116 423

Defence Media Liaison: 02 6265 3343 or 0408 498 664



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