Special vehicles sent to Afghanistan saved New Zealand lives in an attack in Bamiyan today, Prime Minister John Key says.
New Zealand troops from the provincial reconstruction team were doing a routine patrol in three light armoured vehicles (LAVs) when they were attacked shortly after midnight (8am NZT).
Mr Key described the attack as "two-pronged'', with a roadside bomb followed by rocket-propelled grenade fire.
None of the soldiers were injured, although one vehicle was damaged when it hit a bank as they retreated.
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The Defence Force replaced its armoured Humvees in the northeast of Bamiyan province with LAVs this year, partly in response to the death of Lieutenant Tim O'Donnell, who was killed when the Humvee he was travelling in was hit by a roadside bomb last year.
Mr Key said today's attack showed the success of the Lavs.
"What it shows is that the CDF (Defence Force chief) made absolutely the right call in deploying the LAVs to Afghanistan, his actions in doing that have saved the lives of New Zealanders without doubt.''
Commander Joint Forces Major General Dave Gawn said attacks by insurgents were not uncommon in the area, and the threat level at this time of year was particularly high.
"We will continue to monitor the threat levels to ensure we apply the appropriate measures,'' Major General Gawn said.