Portsmouth Divers Set For Afghanistan

6 September 2011, 10:30

Three Portsmouth based Royal Navy divers are preparing to head to Afghanistan to share their expertise in dealing with roadside bombs.

Chief Petty Officer Kev Amaira, Petty Officer Simon Crew and a Leading Seaman, who cannot be named for security reasons, are all based at the Fleet Diving Unit, Horsea Island.

They will spend six months supporting the British Army in training Afghan forces in bomb disposal operations.

CPO Amaira, 44, will be mentoring Afghan National Security Force Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) teams and deploying with them on patrols from various forward operating bases.

He said: "The most challenging aspect will be the language barrier and the cultural differences - it will be a real eye-opener for us.

"But the emphasis is very much on training the Afghan forces and we are looking forward to passing on our expertise and helping them in this important task.

"The aim is to hand over the EOD role entirely to Afghan forces within three to four years.''

PO Crew, 36, will work with the Coalition Force Training Team (EOD) in Camp Bastion and the leading seaman will join front-line patrols working from various locations with colleagues from the British Army's Royal Logistic Corps.

The trio are set to leave the UK in the next two to three weeks, according to a navy spokeswoman.

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