Karzai orders probe into Paktia civilian deaths
KABUL/GARDEZ (PAN): President Hamid Karzai on Sunday assigned an official delegation to investigate reports that some civilians were killed in a NATO airstrike in southeastern Paktia province, the Presidential Palace said.
In Gardez, the capital of Paktia, the governor’s spokesman Roohullah Samon said eight members of a family, including children and women, were killed when an International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) helicopter bombed a house in the mountainous area of the Garda Serai district on Saturday evening.
A statement issued from the Presidential Palace said Karzai was deeply shocked over the incident and ordered a delegation to visit the province and submit its findings to him.
Paktia council head Khaista Jan Ahadi strongly condemned the incident, calling it an attack on Afghans. “Suck kind of operations in which innocent people are killed amount to disrespect to the strategic agreement between the US and Afghanistan,” he said.
“This shows the foreigners do not pay attention to the demands of the president and Afghans,” Ahadi remarked. He further said more than a dozen militants were killed in the operation. The insurgents wanted to target Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers, he claimed.
A provincial tribal council member Janat Khan Mangal said the Afghan government should have signed the strategic pact once foreign troops had stopped killing Afghan civilians.
ISAF says it has launched an investigation to check whether civilians were killed in the incident.
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