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Feb 14,2008
Canadian soldier says gear sub-standard
by UPI

MONTREAL -- A Canadian soldier who has served two tours of combat in Afghanistan claims the gear troops are given is sub-standard, a Quebec broadcaster reported.

Cpl. Daniel Beaulieu, an 11-year veteran of the forces, returned home two weeks ago, and told Quebec's French TVA network the vests, boots and holsters given troops aren't suited to the type of warfare going on in Afghanistan, a Toronto Star correspondent reported from Montreal.

"The guys over there are the ones with their boots in the sand, they're the ones who know whether a vest or a holster or whatever is well-adapted or not ... and if you ask me, no one's bothered to listen to them," said Beaulieu.

He said the vests don't have enough pockets for extra ammunition clips, holsters don't securely contain side arms, and boots are unsuitable for lengthy hiking, which is common in the fighting.

In response, Col. Jean-Marc Lanthier, the forces' chief supply officer, called an Ottawa news conference to address the allegations.

"Is (the equipment) accepted by the vast majority? Yes," Lanthier said. "Can we provide equipment that will please everybody all the time? No."

Copyright © 2008, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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