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Sajjan Expresses ‘Regret’ For Claiming To Take Credit For Leading Key Battle Against Taliban

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan has clarified recent remarks in which he claimed to be the “architect” of a major 2006 land battle against the Taliban in Afghanistan.

OTTAWA – Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan expressed regret for taking credit for leading a major land battle to root out the Taliban in Afghanistan more than a decade ago, CBC reported.

In an April 18 speech to a conference called “Conflict Prevention and Peacekeeping in a Changing World” in New Delhi, Sajjan spoke about his role in the pivotal 2006 Operation Medusa.

Sajjan told the conference he was “no stranger to conflict,” and said he was decorated by both Canada and the U.S. militaries for his service fighting terrorism and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

“On my first deployment to Kandahar in 2006, I was kind of thrown into an unforeseen situation and I became the architect of an operation called Operation Medusa where we removed over, about, 1,500 Taliban fighters off the battlefield. And I was very proud to be on the main assault of that force,” he said, adding that he was recognized for his efforts.

In a statement provided to CBC today, Sajjan said whenever he speaks about his time in uniform he makes an effort to give credit to those with whom he served.

“Every military operation our Forces undertook in Afghanistan, including Operation Medusa, relied on the courage and dedication of many individuals across the Canadian Forces,” he said. “My comments were in no way intended to diminish the role that my fellow soldiers and my superiors played in Operation Medusa.

“What I should have said was that our military successes are the result of the leadership, service and sacrifice of the many dedicated women and men in the Canadian Forces. I regret that I didn’t say this then, but I want to do so now.”

Brig.-Gen. David Fraser was the Canadian Forces general who commanded the NATO forces in southern Afghanistan at the time.

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