Injured Taliban 'Sought Treatment,' Leading to Attack
US and Afghan forces, backed by a US Apache helicopter attacked a medical clinic in the Paktika Province of Afghanistan yesterday after receiving reports that a wounded Taliban commander had “sought treatment” at the facility.
The attack sparked a gunbattle which according to provincial officials left at least 12 militants and two policemen killed. The US denied that anyone had died in the attack but claimed to have injured their target, though since he was already injured in the first place it’s probably hard to be sure about that.
The US defended the attack on the clinic, insisting that it had ensured the building was cleared of civilians before the helicopter began firing and that since the clinic was occupied by Taliban it lost “its protected status” as a civilian location.
The Pakitika Province borders Pakistan’s Waziristan Agencies, and is no stranger to major clashes. Attacking a medical clinic, however, particularly when health care is in such short supply in rural Afghanistan, is likely to fuel resentment among locals. Likewise, the attack on a relatively minor Taliban commander when he was already injured and seeking medical treatment is probably going to raise further suspicions as the Afghan government continues to talk about reconciliation.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Iraq Detains Sunni Women to Intimidate Families Into Opposing ISIS - July 22nd, 2014
- No Place Is Safe as Israel Pounds Civilian Areas in Gaza - July 22nd, 2014
- Israeli Envoy: Our Military Deserves Nobel Peace Prize for Not Killing More Gazans - July 22nd, 2014
- Israeli Attacks on Gaza Continue: 693 Palestinians, 34 Israelis Dead - July 22nd, 2014
- Iraqi Govt Barrel Bombs Kill 19 Civilians in Fallujah - July 22nd, 2014