Afghan Delegation Attacked at Site of Massacre
Kabul, March 13 (RHC)-- Taliban militants opened fire Tuesday on an Afghan government delegation visiting one of the two villages in southern Afghanistan where a U.S. soldier killed 17 civilians in cold blood.
The gunfire reportedly killed an Afghan soldier who was providing security for the delegation in Balandi village, according to Gen. Abdul Razaq, the police chief for Kandahar province where the visit took place. Another Afghan soldier and a military prosecutor were apparently wounded in the attack.
The delegation, which included two of President Hamid Karzai's brothers and other senior officials, was holding a memorial service in a mosque for the civilians killed Sunday when the shooting began.
One of the Afghan president's brothers, Qayum Karzai, said members of the delegation, which also included Kandahar governor Tooryalai Wesa and Minister of Border and Tribal Affairs Asadullah Khalid, were safe and headed back to Kandahar city.
U.S.authorities have a U.S. Army staff sergeant in custody who has admitted to carrying out the killings before dawn Sunday, but has not released his name. Villagers have described him going from house to house in the middle of the night, opening fire on sleeping families and then burning some of the bodies of the dead afterward.