Afghan Troops Raid Doctors Without Borders-Run Hospital

Aid Group Complains Troops 'Behaved Violently Toward Staff'

A major hospital in the Kunduz Province run by Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is temporarily closed to new patients after Afghan troops forced their way in, claiming they were looking for an injured patient they believed to be working for al-Qaeda.

MSF issued a statement slamming the move, saying it showed a lack of respect for the hospital, which is supposed to be safeguarded under international law. They said the troops “behaved violently toward staff” at the site, and ignored foreign doctors’ demands that they leave.

It is unclear at this point whether the Afghan troops, identified as part of the Special Operations forces, actually captured anybody during the raid, and they have refused to address the media at all about the operation.

Most international aid group-run hospitals in Afghanistan take all casualties and don’t ask questions. The Geneva Conventions are supposed to prevent military personnel from launching operations against medical facilities, but the US occupation forces did it a handful of times during the war, and now Afghan troops appear to feel justified in following their lead.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.