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Three Georgian Soldiers Wounded in Afghanistan
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 25 Jan.'13 / 01:19

Two Georgian soldiers in Afghanistan sustained "minor" injuries when they came under insurgents' fire during patrolling, the Georgian Ministry of Defense (MoD) said late on January 24.

Corporal Erekle Kharshiladze and junior sergeant Iago Kakulia are currently undergoing treatment in the U.S. army operated Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, according to MoD.

In a separate incident private Guram Chimakhidze was "seriously" wounded during patrolling when an anti-personnel mine exploded, according to MoD.

It said that private Chimakhidze was currently at Bastion hospital in the Helmand province and would be transferred to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany.

The announcement signals change in MoD's policy, which previously was not reporting about those incidents in Afghanistan in which Georgian solders were sustaining injuries. Recently the MoD has also made public total number of Georgian soldiers, 93, wounded in Afghanistan in 2010-2012.

Georgia has lost total of nineteen soldiers in Afghanistan, eight of them in 2012.

Georgia joined ISAF mission in November 2009 with deployment of about 170 soldiers in Kabul. In April, 2010 Georgia increased its contribution by sending a battalion to the Helmand province and in October, 2012 Georgia almost doubled its presence in Afghanistan to over 1,560 soldiers after sending one more battalion to the Helmand province.

Georgia, in cooperation with the U.S. plans a rehabilitation center where wounded soldiers will be cared for. Members of the U.S. European Command visited the proposed center on January 23.

"The U.S. government is working closely with the MoD to build amputee care capacity and will continue to show its commitment for caring for wounded warriors," the U.S. embassy in Tbilisi said on January 23. "Georgia's substantial contribution to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan is invaluable.  We recognize Georgia's loss of soldiers in the line of duty in Afghanistan as a great sacrifice and we mourn these, as we also honor those Georgian soldiers who were wounded in action."

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