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Afghan civilian dead were 'human shields'
Cat : Afghanistan
Date : 2006-10-28 17:23:26                      Reader : 327

target them? That is a paradox. NATO came for civilians protection and freedom, meanwhile they are the most victims of NATO military raids!!

WNN 28/10/2006

Afghan civilian dead were 'human shields'

The White House says NATO chief Jaap de Hoop Scheffer blames the Taliban for NATO's killing of Afghan civilians, saying the Islamist militia was taking "human shields" to try to ward off attacks.

Mr de Hoop Scheffer, speaking to reporters after talks with US President George W Bush, lamented that NATO forces had slain civilians in Afghanistan, calling it "always a tragedy".

"Let me say that when, in those actions of NATO, of those brave NATO soldiers, civilians are killed, as happened two days ago, that's always a tragedy. That's a tragedy," the secretary-general said.

In their closed-door talks, Mr de Hoop Scheffer and Mr Bush discussed "the fact that the Taliban had begun using innocent civilians as human shields," White House spokesman Tony Snow said.

Mr Snow later confirmed the secretary-general had explicitly described civilians killed in clashes on Tuesday (local time) as human shields seized by the Taliban: "That's what he said, yes".

Fourteen civilians were killed in a bomb blast in southern Afghanistan on Friday as the Government said it believed about 25 were killed in fighting between NATO and the Taliban this week.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has called for improved coordination between Afghan and foreign troops to avoid civilian casualties.

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