Anti-War.com & Deutsche Presse-Agentur – 2011-04-13 00:20:48
NATO-Taliban Clash Kills Three Afghan Children
Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com
( April 12, 2011) — Three Afghan children were killed on Tuesday and another four civilians were wounded when a clash broke out between NATO and Taliban forces in the Faryab Province. A number of coalition forces were also wounded, and NATO claimed “several Taliban” killed.
The official NATO statement blamed the Taliban for all the civilian casualties, saying that they threw a hand grenade at the civilians during the clash. Local officials are still investigating the incident, and donâ€™t appear to have concluded who actually caused the deaths.
Faryab Province has rarely been a source of violence, but this is the second incident in as many weeks, as an Afghan policeman who was apparently working for a militant faction killed two US soldiers last week.
Civilian deaths have been occurring with increasing regularity across Afghanistan, and both sides have killed a large number. Generally speaking the deaths have occurred along the Pakistani border in the south, but as todayâ€™s violence showed, the deaths are not exclusive to the south.
NATO-Taliban Clash Leaved
Three Afghan Children Dead
KABULl (April 12, 2011) — An Afghan provincial governor and NATO military differed Tuesday on who was responsible for deaths of three children in a clash between foreign forces and Taliban in northern Afghanistan.
NATO said in a statement that a suspected insurgent killed the children and injured four other civilians in Faryab province after being targeted by Afghan and NATO forces in a compound in Bal Chiragh district.
Acting on intelligence reports, Afghan and NATO troops targeted a senior Taliban fighter and two of his associates in Faryab province, the military said.
The security forces called on suspected Taliban to surrender, and tried to put women and children into a courtyard after the initial fighting broke out, it said.
‘One of the insurgents subsequently pointed a weapon through an adjacent window and then threw a hand grenade into the courtyard area, resulting in the deaths and injuries of Afghan civilians,’ it said.
Five Afghan and coalition forces personnel were also injured in the attack, while the combined forces also killed ‘several insurgents’ during the firefight, it added.
However, Abdul Haq Shafaq, Faryab’s provincial governor said a father and three of his children were killed Tuesday after the NATO military targeted their home, in which four Taliban fighters had also stayed.
‘The civilians were killed after their home collapsed in an explosion,’ he said, adding they had all the victims received shrapnel.
‘The Taliban had only (AK-47) Kalashnikovs, so how could they fire rocket in the same house they had hidden inside?’ the governor asked. He said a delegation sent to the area found bodies of the four Taliban fighters.
Civilian casualties at the hands of international forces have been a sensitive issue in Afghanistan. President Hamid Karzai has repeatedly lashed out at NATO troops for killing innocent civilians during their anti-Taliban operations.
Tuesday’s incident came around a week after five civilian men were killed in NATO night-raid in Sayad district of neighboring province of Suri Pul.
More than 2700 civilians were killed in conflict last year, the bloodiest year for Afghans since the ouster of Taliban regime by US-led coalition forces in late 2001.
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