Harjit Sajjan issues Facebook apology for recent gaffe over role in 2006 offensive
Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan issued an apology on Facebook Saturday morning for the recent miscue regarding his role in a 2006 offensive against the Taliban.
“I made a mistake in describing my role. I wish to retract that description and apologize for it,” Sajjan wrote. “I am truly sorry.”
In a prepared speech in India earlier this week, Sajjan described himself as the “architect” of Operation Medusa, an offensive in Afghanistan in which Canada “removed about 1,500 Taliban fighters off the battlefield.”
Sajjan acknowledged he had overstepped his accomplishments over his role in and issued a direct apology to his former collegaues as well.
“While I am proud of the role I played during my deployments to Afghanistan, my comments were in no way intended to diminish the roles of my former superiors and fellow soldiers,” he wrote. “To them, I offer my sincere apologies.”
The defence minister’s misstep was the subject of much bemusement on Twitter Friday.
Sajjan had issued an apology in a statement on Friday but noted the reaction in his Facebook comment which led to him posting his Facebook note.
This was not the first time he exaggerated his role in the operation.
WATCH: Sajjan touts Canada’s defence industry during India visit
In a July 2015 interview, before he became an MP, Sajjan said, “In 2006, General [Jonathan] Vance was going to be the chief of the defence staff. If I can quote him, he said, I was the architect of Operation Medusa, one of the biggest operations since the Korean War that Canada has led.”
Asked about Sajjan’s remarks at a news conference addressing sexual misconduct in the military, Vance said, “I’m not really aware of this case, and quite frankly, I’d like us to keep our eye on the ball about sexual misconduct in the Armed Forces today.”
— With files from David Akin and Jesse Ferreras
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