16 Civilians Killed in Wardak Operation
Afghanistan, Kabul, 29 October / corr Trend A.Hakimi / The US-led coalition forces say they have killed a dozen Taliban fighters in an operation in the central Maidan Wardak province, but local residents say 16 civilians were killed in a joint operation by US and Afghan forces.
A statement from the coalition forces said on they killed 12 militants Monday and detained one while securing the site where a Coalition helicopter was forced to land in Wardak province after taking enemy fire.
The UH-60 Blackhawk came under small-arms fire from a number of militants. The helicopter crew returned fire, but had to land when the tail was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade, said the statement.
Coalition ground forces responding to the scene were engaged by several militants in the area. Coalition forces responded, initially killing five militants and continued searching the area and were engaged by more militants. Coalition forces again responded, killing seven more militants and detaining one, the statement added.
However, eyewitnesses in Saiadabad districts Haftasiab area, where the operation took place, said 16 villagers were killed in bombing by foreign troops accompanied with ground operation by Afghan forces.
Muhammad Ibrahim, a resident of Dandoki village, said seven children were killed only in his village in bombing by foreign forces.
The children were in front of a mosque when foreign planes dropped bombs on them.
After this, government troops took out villagers from their homes in Haftasiab area, tied their hands to their backs and shot them dead, said Ibrahim.
Muhammad Tahir, another resident of the area, said he counted 16 bodies killed in the military ground and air operation by Afghan and foreign forces on 27 October.
He added that a security contractor company guards were also with the Afghan forces that killed the civilians.