Afghans protest civilian casualties
Press TV (Iran)
Mon, 01 Sep 2008 09:17:25 GMT
Hundreds of Afghan civilians have taken to streets in the capital Kabul to protest against civilian casualties by US-led forces.
The protest comes after US-led forces killed a man and his two children in the eastern outskirts of Kabul early Monday.
Residents and witnesses say US-led troops carried out a pre-dawn raid in Hud Kheil area, killing a man and two of his sons aged one and two. The man’s wife was also wounded in the operation.
“It was past one o’clock when the troops came and surrounded our houses” said a resident.
“They threw hand grenades on one house and killed three family members”, he added.
Local television showed footage of the bodies and a damaged house with broken windows and bullet holes in the walls.
“Are these two children al-Qaeda?”, an angry resident asked.
The issue of civilian deaths is a particularly sensitive topic in Afghanistan. On August 22, in one of the biggest civilian killings by coalition forces since the US-led invasion of 2001, a US air strike killed nearly 90 Afghan civilians, including women and children, in the village of Azizabad in Herat province.
Afghan President Hamed Karzai has strongly criticized foreign forces for the civilian deaths, saying innocent people are becoming the victims of “reckless operations” by foreign forces, calling for a review of foreign military presence in the country.
He also warned that the anger felt by many Afghans towards foreign forces in Afghanistan may reduce support for his government.