Rockets kill ten civilians in Afghanistan

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

American, French and Afghan forces in Kapisa

Insurgents in eastern Afghanistan fired rockets into a marketplace on Monday, killing ten civilians in an area where French armed forces were meeting with tribal elders.

French and Afghan officials said the attack, which was in the town of Tagab in the Kapisa province, wounded at least 28 people. Two rockets hit the market as the commander of French troops in eastern Afghanistan, General Marcel Druart, was meeting tribal chiefs nearby.

"The Taliban fired the rockets from Badrab, where they have a base. They are strong there," said deputy police chief Haji Mohammed Akbar.

French and US medical teams evacuated the wounded by helicopter to hospitals for treatment. No French personnel were reported hurt.

The French commander attended the gathering of tribal elders, known as a "shura," as part of NATO efforts to win the trust of Afghan civilians in a region with a strong Taliban presence. French troops have been fighting the Taliban northeast of the capital, Kabul, to try to secure towns and roads threatened by the militants.