Afghan boy mistakenly shot by US Marines, official says

By HAFIZ AHMADI | Deutsche Presse-Agentur (Hamburg, Germany) | Published: January 10, 2014

KABUL, Afghanistan The Afghan government on Friday condemned the killing of a 5-year-old boy by U.S. troops, whom they say had mistaken him for a Taliban insurgent.

An official said the boy was mistakenly shot by U.S. Marines on Wednesday in the southern province of Helmand.

"The troops mistook the boy for a Taliban insurgent because of dusty weather ... on Wednesday," said Omar Zwak, a spokesman for the governor of Helmand Province.

"The boy was injured by shooting and lost his life at a nearby hospital later the same day," he said.

The spokesman of Afghan President Hamid Karzai also condemned the killing.

"Unfortunately, attacks against civilians still continue despite Afghanistan's demands for an end [to the violence]," Aimal Faizi told Deutsche Presse-Agentur.

The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) expressed its "deepest regrets and sympathies" to the boy's family.

"ISAF is committed to ensuring that all possible measures are taken to prevent civilian casualties," said spokesman William Griffin, adding that NATO would investigate the incident with the help of Afghan officials.

Marines with the 33rd Light Infantry Battalion move towards an extraction point in the Helmand province of Afghanistan, July 3, 2013.


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