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Monday, August 27, 2012

Hunger pangs for Key

Key's glib comments were 'untrue and unfair', this Stuff report reveals.

The Hungarian defence minister has written an open letter to New Zealand, refuting Prime Minister John Key's claims that Hungarian soldiers no longer patrol in their assigned area in Afghanistan.

Minister Csaba Hende wrote of his "deepest condolences" for the loss of New Zealand soldiers, but said claims Hungarian soldiers were no longer leaving their camp were false.

"Please accept my deepest condolences on behalf of the Hungarian Ministry of Defence and the Hungarian Defence Forces for the two New Zealand soldiers who lost their lives in Afghanistan while on duty earlier this month.

"Unfortunately, Hungary also experienced this sorrow in recent years, for this reason we understand the grief over the loss of comrades," he said.

But he went on to say "it is false and incorrect information that the Hungarian-commanded Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRT) soldiers who are on duty in the province of Baghlan do not patrol in the province".

New Zealand soldiers Pralli Durrer and Rory Malone were killed by insurgents who had crossed from Baghlan, which is the responsibility of Hungary's 400-strong PRT on August 5.

In the aftermath, Key was reported to have said New Zealand soldiers were facing more danger because they were patrolling areas that Hungarian soldiers refused to.

Cabinet gave approval for Kiwi troops based in Bamiyan to extend their patrols into Baghlan and Key criticised the efforts of the Hungarian soldiers saying "Hungarians don't go out at night - they might in Budapest, but not in Afghanistan".

Hende said that was untrue and unfair.


bsprout said...

How many countries have National insulted now?

robertguyton said...

Do we count our own?