Thursday, October 30, 2008

Coalition kills 16 civilians, say locals

While many western news sources reported the US-led coalition's claims of killing 12 insurgents in Wardak province, none of them relayed accusations by locals that many civilians were killed. Only in the Afghan press do such testimonies see the light of day:

16 civilians killed in Maidan Wardak operation
Habib Rahman Ibrahimi and Sher Ahmad Haidar

GHAZNI CITY, Oct 28 (PAN) - The US-led coalition forces say they have killed a dozen Taliban fighters in an operation in the central Maidan Wardak province, but local residents say 16 civilians were killed in a joint operation by US and Afghan forces.

A statement from the coalition forces said on Tuesday they killed 12 militants Monday and detained one while securing the site where a Coalition helicopter was forced to land in Wardak province after taking enemy fire...

However, eyewitnesses in Saiadabad districts Haftasiab area, where the operation took place, said 16 villagers were killed in bombing by foreign troops accompanied with ground operation by Afghan forces.

Muhammad Ibrahim, a resident of Dandoki village, said seven children were killed only in his village in bombing by foreign forces.

The children were in front of a mosque when foreign planes dropped bombs on them.

After this, government troops took out villagers from their homes in Haftasiab area, tied their hands to their backs and shot them dead, said Ibrahim.

Muhammad Tahir, another resident of the area, said he counted 16 bodies killed in the military ground and air operation by Afghan and foreign forces on Monday.

He added that a security contractor company guards were also with the Afghan forces that killed the civilians. (link)

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