Tuesday, February 27, 2007

CND killed another afghan; defense or a trend

Canadians shoot Afghan civilian
Graham Thomson, CanWest News Service
February 27, 2007

KANDAHAR CITY, Afghanistan -
Canadian soldiers have shot and killed an Afghan who ignored warnings to stay clear of a military convoy. It is fourth time in little more than a week that Canadians have been involved in a shooting.

On Tuesday morning, troops opened fire on a car they say sped towards them despite repeated warnings to stay back.

Afghan National Police officers had set up a security cordon around a stalled convoy in the west end of the city when the car approached. Soldiers say the driver ignored signals from the police to stop and drove through the cordon picking up speed as he neared the Canadians.

Fearing they were under attack from a suicide bomber, the soldiers opened fire, hitting the car and forcing it into a ditch. The driver was declared dead at the scene.

Military spokesman Maj. Dale MacEachern said it would be unfair to lump all four shootings together into a “trend.”

“Each is an individual case with its own set of circumstances,” said MacEachern.

The shootings are creating a public relations nightmare for Canadians who are trying win over the Afghan people through security patrols and reconstruction projects. Local residents have expressed dismay and frustration at the shootings.