Karzai: No More NATO Airstrikes on Houses

Warns of unilateral move to stop attacks
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted May 31, 2011 6:41 AM CDT
Afghan President Hamid Karzai gestures during a press conference at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan on Tuesday, May 31, 2011.   (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq)
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(Newser) – Hamid Karzai has called on NATO to cease all airstrikes on civilian homes, warning that Afghanistan could unilaterally intervene to stop any continued attacks. The Afghan president spoke at a televised press conference following a US airstrike that killed some 12 women and children. “The Afghan people can no longer tolerate these attacks on their homes,” Karzai said. “Nobody has the right to take the life of an Afghan child.”

Despite a NATO apology, “it seems like nobody is taking this seriously,” said a Karzai rep. Gen. David Petraeus hadn’t personally called Karzai with an apology, palace officials said. Karzai lacks major authority to bar the airstrikes, but his comments could prompt anger across Afghanistan, the Wall Street Journal notes. That could hurt the West’s already-tense relations with the country as the coalition prepares to start withdrawing troops.

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