PAN, August 20, 2011
ISAF operation sparks protest in Ghazni
As a mark of protest, angry residents carried the dead bodies through the Janda bazaar
by Mirwais Himmat
Afghans carry the bodies of people killed overnight after a raid by NATO and Afghan forces, during a protest in Taloqan May 18, 2011. Ten people have been killed and fifty wounded in violent protests against the killing of two men and two women in a night-time raid in north Afghanistan, a top local health official said. (Photo: Reuters)
Residents of southern Ghazni province protested on Saturday against the killing of four civilians during a nighttime operation by international troops.
NATO-led troops killed the civilians during the offensive in the Ghonday area of Gilan district late on Thursday night, resident Zainullah told Pajhwok Afghan News.
As a mark of protest, angry residents carried the dead bodies through the Janda bazaar and blocked the Kabul-Kandahar highway, he said.
Haji Abdul Wali Khanzada, the provincial council deputy chief, confirmed the incident and said the identities of the dead were yet to be ascertained.
Provincial police chief, Col. Zarawar Zahid, said the operation was conducted unilaterally. Afghan forces were not taken into confidence, he added.
ISAF, meanwhile, said coalition forces were working with the Janda Village and Gilan district leadership to control the situation and prevent further acts of violence.
The servicemembers in Ghazni province are probing the deaths of four local nationals, according to a statement from the ISAF press office.
"Allegations of civilian casualties are a common practice for insurgent information operation campaigns. For this reason, we must thoroughly investigate the facts before we make any determination of wrongdoing or deaths caused by coalition and Afghan forces."
Elsewhere in the province, three people were killed when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb, the police chief said.
Characters Count: 2451