NATO Admits Four Killed Were Civilians, Not ‘Insurgents’

Kids Were Driving Home From a Volleyball Game

by Jason Ditz, April 21, 2010

As details of the Monday night shooting along the roads of Afghanistan’s Khost Province continue to come out, NATO has revised its initial claim that the four teens killed included two “known insurgents” and two “suspected insurgents,” conceding that they were actually all innocent civilians.

The four were driving home from a volleyball game along the highway when a military convoy spotted them. After flashing their lights at the car, the troops opened fire, killing everyone in the car.

The victims included two brothers, Faizullah and Nasratullah Mansour, and their cousins Maiwand and Amirullah Mansour. The eldest, Amirullah Mansour, has recently become a police officer in the region, while the other three were still students.

After the initial denial, NATO is now expressing “regret” over the killings, the second incident of NATO troops attacking a civilian vehicle in a week, and promised to deploy “training teams” to “implement the critical lessons learned.” Exactly what those lessons are, besides not killing children on their way home from a volleyball game, are unclear.

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