TORONTO [Peter Paul Media] — Lieutenant Justin Boyes, 26, was killed when the ground he was walking on exploded as he patrolled a heavily populated district in Afghanistan, the Ministry of National Defence said Wednesday.
Lt. Boyes was leading a team of Afghan National Police around 9 a.m. local time when an Improvised Explosive Device [IED] detonated under his feet.
The blast, which occurred about 20 kilometres southwest of Kandahar City, injured two other Canadian soldiers but both are expected to recover, the Globe and Mail reported. Two Afghan security personnel were also killed, according to U.N. staff via BBC News.
The explosion followed an attack on a U.N. guest house in central Kabul just after 3 a.m. Wednesday which killed six U.N. officials. In that attack, the attackers shot two Afghan security guards dead while dressed as policemen at the front entrance of the 42-room safe house. A total of three attackers were later shot dead by authorities ending the bloodshed, BBC News reported.
“I join all Canadians in expressing our deepest sympathies to the family, loved ones and colleagues of Lieutenant Boyes. You remain in our hearts and in our minds,” Canadian Governor-General Michaëlle Jean said in a statement.
“On behalf of the defence community, I wish to express my heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathies to the family, friends and fellow soldiers of Lieutenant Justin Boyes who died while conducting operations in Afghanistan,” Defence Minister Peter MacKay said. “I would also like to wish a prompt and full recovery to the two other soldiers injured in the same incident,” he added.
Lt. Boyes served under the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry based in Edmonton, Alberta. He was a part of the Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team and is the 132nd Canadian soldier killed in action since 2002.