Funerals have taken place in Kandahar province in southern Afghanistan for civilians killed in a NATO air strike on Tuesday. There were further civilian deaths on Friday with 14 people killed in neighbouring Uruzgan province. The Taliban accuse NATO forces of genocide and vow to step up suicide attacks.
A relative of victims in the Kandahar bombing, Abdul Hakeem, said 21 members of his family had been killed. NATO says a dozen civilians died in Tuesday’s air strike – Afghan officials estimate the number of victims to stand between 30 and 80. The Afghan Defence Ministry, NATO and a team of local elders appointed by President Hamid Karzai are investigating the incident.
Karzai expressed his concerns: “The people of Afghanistan are hurt and saddened by this incident, we are sad, we share our solidarity with the victims’ families,” he said. Villagers have denounced NATO and blamed the Karzai government for lack of security.