93 people killed in NATO airstrike in N Afghanistan: officials
www.chinaview.cn 2009-09-04 19:38:40   Print

    KABUL, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- A NATO air strike Friday killed 93 people, some of them civilians, in Kunduz province of northern Afghanistan, said the provincial governor Mohammad Omar.

    It occurred at around 1:45 a.m. when Taliban militants hijacked two fuel trucks and wanted to take them to a far-flung area in Aliabad district, police chief of the district, Bariali Basharyar told Xinhua.

An injured person is carried into the main hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan , Sep.4, 2009. A NATO air strike Friday killed 93 people, some of them civilians, in Kunduz province, said the provincial governor Mohammad Omar.  (Xinhua/AFP Photo)
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    The trucks stuck in a river in Aliabad district and villagers nearby rushed to the site to pick up fuel when the two trucks exploded in a NATO air strike, according to Basharyar.

    Mohammad Omar said the incident also caused over a hundred people injured and some of them have been taken to Kabul for treatment.

    A NATO statement said it launched the air strike, destroying the two fuel trucks and killing a large number of insurgents.

    "Some of the dead were civilians and some were Taliban fighters," said the governor of Aliabad district, Haji Habibullah.

An injured person is carried into the main hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan , Sep.4, 2009. A NATO air strike Friday killed 93 people, some of them civilians, in Kunduz province, said the provincial governor Mohammad Omar.  (Xinhua/AFP Photo)
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    The police chief of Kunduz Province, Razaq Yaqoobi, confirmed 56 Taliban militants were among the dead, but he gave no figures on civilian casualties.

    The International Security Assistance Force, the NATO-led military alliance in Afghanistan said: "after the ISAF observed the insurgent activity and assessed civilians were not in the area, a local ISAF commander authorized an air strike."

    The ISAF said it "has received reports that civilians were killed and injured in this attack and in conjunction with Afghan officials is now conducting an investigation into the claims."

    Continuous civilian casualties during the battle against militants have become a sensitive issue in Afghanistan as NATO chief Commander Stanely McChrystal has vowed to avoid non-combatant casualties in military operations.

NATO chief says alliance probing Afghan airstrike

    BRUSSELS, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Friday that an investigation is going on to see whether civilians were killed in an NATO airstrike on two fuel tankers in northern Afghanistan overnight.

    "There was an ISAF (International Security Assistance Force) airstrike against the Taliban during the night. Certainly, a number of Taliban were killed. There is also the possibility of civilian casualties as well. But it is not yet clear," Rasmussen told reporters in Brussels.  Full story

Editor: Li Xianzhi
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