In memory of

 

 

28 – 50 civilians

killed on Thursday evening, July 26, 2007

 

in small villages like Kumbarak situated around the town of Gereshk, Helmand Province. NATO aerial bombing struck both homes and fleeing residents, killing between 28-50 civilians. Residents of the bombed area said some 50 civilians had been killed; a parliamentarian, Wali Jan Sabri, from Helmand also reported a number of 50-60; and the district chief of Gereshk, Abdul Manaf Khan, said more than 20 civilians (hence 50?) were killed while fleeing the NATO bombing, adding that some 50 Taliban were also killed. Malim Mirwali, a member of Parliament for Gereshk, said that more than 40 civilians were killed in the air strikes – a figure that one local resident also cited. A villager, Nimatullah Khan said, “The war planes came and bombed these villages – more than 40 civilians killed, including women and children. The villagers’ bodies were buried this (Friday) morning because the weather was hot. Right now, the people are scared, and the operation is ongoing between these forces and the Taliban.” 

As usual, a NATO spokesperson employed the deny-first tactic in the hope that the issue would go away: Lt-Col. Charlie Mayo of British forces said he had no reports of civilians dying though admitted a military operation was on-going in the area. The more independent-minded Canadian press (Canada.com) headlined an article quoting Reuters:

“Dozens of Afghan civilians die in air raids: residents

 

Wali Jan Sabri, parliamentarian:  up to 60 civilians killed

Abdul Manaf Khan, Gereshk district chief: up to 28 civilians killed

Lt-Col. Charlie Mayo: no civilians killed 

  

Killed in “precision” bombing by US/NATO war planes.