Relative of Afghan president Hamid Karzai shot dead by NATO troops

Friday, March 11, 2011

Hamid Karzai was said to be "extremely sad" over the shooting

A relative of the Afghan president Hamid Karzai has been mistakenly shot dead by NATO troops, according to officials. Yar Mohammad Khan, who was in his 60s was killed during a night raid in the Dand district. Khan, who also possibly used the surname of Karzai, was believed to have been a cousin of either the president or a cousin of the president's father.

The president's brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, released a statement over the shooting. He said, "It was a mistake. The forces conducted an operation, he was at his home, he came out and was shot. It was a mistake. What can you do about it?" Several officials have apologised for the incident including United States president Barack Obama, US defence secretary Robert Gates, and commander of international troops in Afghanistan General Petraeus.

Khan's death come only days after President Karzai called the killing of civilians unacceptable. The president urged the United Nations to pressure NATO to take more care during operations when searching for insurgents. Karzai rejected a previous apology from General Petraeus over the killing of nine boys during an air strike.