TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Coalition admits responsibility for boys' deaths in Afghanistan

In December, the Tribune-Review reported on the aftermath of a 2007 killing of three unarmed Iraqi teenagers who were deaf and mute.

Members of the Army squadron involved in the shooting blamed Staff Sgt. Michael Barbera, the squad leader, for the killings, which they say triggered reprisal bombings that killed 10 of their fellow soldiers.

Soldiers who testified against Barbera said they were punished for blowing the whistle on what they considered an unjust act that stained the reputation of their unit.

Read more: triblive.com/investigative/specialprojects/rulesofengagement/

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Saturday, March 2, 2013, 6:24 p.m.
 

KABUL, Afghanistan — International forces accidentally killed two Afghan boys during an operation in southern Afghanistan, the U.S.-led coalition said Saturday.

Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, the commander of U.S. and allied forces in Afghanistan, offered his “personal apology and condolences to the family of the boys who were killed” and said the coalition takes full responsibility for the deaths.

A statement issued by the coalition said the boys were killed on Thursday when coalition forces fired at what they thought were insurgent forces in the Shahid-e Hasas district of Uruzgan province. It says a joint Afghan-NATO investigation team visited the location Saturday and met with local leaders.

The killing of civilians by foreign forces has been a major source of tension with the Afghan government throughout the nearly 12-year-old war.

According to a recent report by the United Nations, 2,754 Afghan civilians were killed last year, down 12 percent from 3,131 in 2011. But the number killed in the second half of last year rose, suggesting that Afghanistan is likely to face continued violence as the Taliban and other militants fight for control following the impending withdrawal of U.S. and allied combat forces.

The U.N. said the Taliban and other insurgents were responsible for 81 percent of the civilian deaths and injuries last year while 8 percent were attributed to pro-government forces. The remaining civilian deaths and injuries could not be attributed to either side.

The number of casualties blamed on U.S. and allied forces decreased by 46 percent, with 316 killed and 271 wounded last year. Most were killed in U.S. and NATO airstrikes, although that number, too, dropped by nearly half last year to 126, including 51 children.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Venezuela’s Maduro says airlines wage ‘economic war’
  2. Sides reach out to undecided in Hong Kong
  3. With help from U.S.-led airstrikes, Kurds retake strategic border town
  4. Obama, India PM forge deals on major issues
  5. 10,000 U.S. troops to stay in Afghanistan as security treaty is finally signed
  6. U.S.-led airstrikes hit 4 Syrian provinces
  7. Virus traced to mosquitoes in Latin America causes severe joint pain
  8. U.S.-led strikes hit IS-held oil sites in Syria
  9. U.S., rebels on shaky ground in campaign in Syria
  10. Belgium accuses Muslim group of radicalizing, training youth to fight in Syria
  11. Warplane attacks Benghazi port
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.