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Quqnoos, May 9, 2009

Tour with Tears in Afghan Bombed Village

Everything is chaos, a kid is mourning for his mom and an old woman weeps for 19 family members in Geranai village of Farah

By Hamid Haidary

The tiny roads of the Afghan village do not witness the cheer of kids, the muddy houses are destroyed and the survival villagers even cannot find a place to mourn the victims of the fatal air-raid.

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It’s incredibly harsh to tolerate a second in Geranai, a remote village in Bala-Buluk district of the western Farah province, where the green rural area is heavily bombed and single smiling face can hardly be seen.

One or two are remaining from a family of 10 to 15 members and the village is mourning the deaths, exceeding 100.

"I am alone now – I have lost 19 of my dearest relatives, they were parts of my heart … I lost them all at a glance, why am I still alive?" tears dropping on the face of a 62 years old woman saying this, sat in a corner of her room which has no roof with broken windows and doors.

Everyone has a pain in the heart in the village, and many have lost their close relatives.

Mohammad, aged 62, said: "what can be a young son for his old dad and how it's possible for the father to see his only son dead.

I have seen it" Looking from the sky, the US-led air strikes destroying houses in Geranai village seem quite similar to Afghan villages bombed by the Soviets some decades ago."

Still the exact number of casualties cannot be accurately given with evidence despite Afghan and international investigation crews visit the scene to probe the incident.

Locals claim the casualties in three digits, but Afghan and the US officials have accepted that 59 non-combatants are hunted down, all now buried in a row in the village.

The only answer of the officials starting from Karzai ending to Obama is a single apology to the victims of the fatal air-strike.

"Regret cannot treat the pain in my heart and cannot bring back my four sons," Najeeba, another old mother, the only survivor of a family of 12 said.

Human Rights Watch termed the bombing a huge tragedy in Afghanistan.

The Human Rights Watch criticising the bombing, said such incidents occure due to the lack of proper intelligence.

Farah air strikes undermined the effectiveness of NATO-US mission in Afghanistan, a Human Rights Watch Official said.

Coalition officials in Kabul said the operations conducted by them was aimed to back the ground troops where they were heavily fighting with the militants in the district.

The strike burst out after the Taliban executed three locals for charges of cooperating with government officials, the Coalition spokesman said.

"The cops went to observe the scene, but they were ambushed, the ANA reinforced the police, but received fatalities and eventually the coalition troops following the ANA, called for close air support," Greg Julian, a coalition spokesman said.

The US official said their report will be revealed after the probe team assigned by President Karzai in Geranai village concludes the investigation.

The air strikes are 'not acceptable' and dropping air bombs cannot defeat the terrorism, but kills innocent civilians, Karzai told CNN in Washington on Friday.


Injured girl in Farah.

A 12-year-old injured girl, victim of Bala Baluk strikes recovering in in Farah Civil Hospital. (Photo: RAWA) (more photos)


Category: US-NATO, HR Violations - Views: 9472