Karzai Chides NATO on Civilian Casualties

NATO says Taliban uses civilians as shields, kids as suicide bombers
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Jun 23, 2007 8:00 AM CDT
Afghan President Hamid Karzai, right, arrives with U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates for giving a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan on Monday, June 4, 2007. Iranian...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – "Extreme use of force" and "reckless operations" are killing Afghan civilians, an indignant President Karzai charged yesterday, saying the failure of NATO and US troops to coordinate with their Afghan counterparts is to blame. Correspondents estimate that more civilians have died this year in actions by foreign allies than from insurgent attacks, the BBC reports.

In turn, NATO officials yesterday accused the Taliban of using civilians as human shields, and children as suicide bombers, the Guardian reports. An six-year-old boy wearing a vest packed with explosives was intercepted recently; he had reportedly been told to find some police or soldiers and then push the button; instead he queried a policeman about the vest, and the bomb was disarmed.