November 19, 2009 11:04
The government is minded to send a transport helicopter unit to Afghanistan to protect security personnel supporting Korea's civilian Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) there. This would be the first time a Korean military helicopter unit has been sent overseas since the Vietnam War.
A government official said a government fact-finding mission that visited Afghanistan on Nov. 12-17 reported worries that civilian PRT and military security personnel could fall victim to explosive devices if traveling overland, so it would be safer for them to travel by helicopter.
Korea was considering support from U.S. military helicopters in Afghanistan but believes this could be insufficient since the U.S. military's own operations take priority.
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