Afghan soldiers killed by friendly fire

2010-04-04 09:20 BJT


According to the Afghan military, German soldiers travelling to the scene of a deadly firefight with Taliban insurgents accidentally killed six Afghan troops. The deaths occurred amid heavy fighting between German troops and militants near the northern city of Kunduz.

German central command confirmed Friday's friendly fire incident but claim only five Afghan soldiers were killed. The German military says its soldiers who were rushing from Kunduz to the scene of the fighting Friday afternoon encountered two civilian vehicles and demanded they stop. When they did not, a German Armored Personnel Carrier opened fire.

The bloody incident occurred hours after a gun battle between Taliban militants and German troops that left three German soldiers dead.

A provincial governor, explains how the incident occurred.

Mohammad Omar, Kunduz provincial governor, said, "The Afghan national army soldiers were in the Chardara district, when they were out on a logistic distribution mission. Unfortunately, when they were on their way, the German soldiers fired on them and six Afghan soldiers were killed."

The Afghan Defense Ministry condemns the incident and is expressing condolences to the families of the dead soldiers.

Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi, Afghan Defense Ministry, said, "We hope the international forces have more coordination with their activities so such incidents do not happen again in the future."

A spokesperson with the International Security Assistance Force or ISAF says there will be an investigation into the friendly fire incident.

Brig-Gen Eric Tremblay, Int'l Security Ass. Force, said, "We regret this tragic loss of life, we will investigate, we will get to the bottom, and we will try and strive to improve our tactics, techniques and procedures."

Afghan commanders have also met with coalition forces to discuss the incident.

More than 4,000 German soldiers have been serving in Afghanistan within the framework of NATO-led ISAF team with the majority stationed in Kunduz province.

Editor: Liu Fang | Source: