Home' Army News : June 6th 2013 Contents Army June 6, 2013
ON THE ROAD TO SECURITY
Team has completed a
$4.2 million road project in
Uruzgan’s Mirabad Valley,
opening up a former insurgent safe
haven to commerce and government
Until recent years the Mirabad Valley
in the province’s east was the scene
of significant fighting between joint
Australian-Afghan forces and insur-
The 14km sealed road features 49
culverts, five major causeways and
one bridge along its length and has
slashed the time it takes to access the
provincial capital, Tarin Kot.
Returning from the final inspec-
tion, Commander of Combined Team
Uruzgan Col Simon Stuart said the
road would forever change the lives of
the people in the valley.
“Roads matter – they matter in this
province because they are a means of
connecting the people with their gov-
ernment,” Col Stuart said.
“They promote better trade, access
to markets, they allow health and edu-
cation to get out to the further reaches
of the province and they are a real way
of connecting communities.”
Cpl Stephen Bristow, of the 7RAR
Task Group, provided security for the
final inspection of the road and said his
last visit to the valley in 2009 was very
“Last time we were in the Mirabad
Valley in 2009 we were in contact with-
in about an hour or two of moving into
the green zone and that has changed
now,” he said.
“We are seeing a lot more Afghan
National Army and Afghan National
Police presence in Uruzgan, especially
in these sorts of outlying regions.
“In 2008 and 2009 there were only a
few ANA and ANP, but now there are so
many more out here with lots of check-
points and a lot more people in those
checkpoints doing an effective job.”
Sgt Daniel George was the project
supervisor and said the local contrac-
tor who built the road, under supervi-
sion by Army engineers, had done a
good job for the local people by build-
ing a road that would provide better
access for years into the future.
“The road will require very little
maintenance from the government for
many years to come,” he said.
The completed section will eventual-
ly connect to a 27km all-weather gravel
road, which is being funded by AusAID,
under their $25 million Uruzgan Rural
Work on the Mirabad road extension
is expected to begin later this year.
Improvements: Soldiers from the 7RAR Task Group
patrol the newly completed road in Mirabad Valley.
Inset top, Bushmasters pass local Afghan farmers
on the road during the final inspection.
Inset bottom, CTU and AusAID personnel inspect a
recently finished culvert.
Photos by Maj Chris Linden
Newly sealed roads help to open up Mirabad
Valley for Afghan traders with reduced travel
time to Tarin Kot, Maj Chris Linden reports.
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