16 Aug 2007

PR# 2007-598

Five killed, three injured in eastern Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan – Five Afghan civilians were killed and three others wounded during an International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) operation in eastern Afghanistan today.

An ISAF unit was conducting operations in response to an improvised explosive device (IED) attack earlier in the day.

The ISAF unit was hit by an IED and also engaged with small arms and mortar fire from Taliban extremists.  Two enemy fighters were wounded by ISAF troops when they returned fire.  A medical evacuation was conducted for the wounded enemy.  On return to the area to conduct cordon and clearance, the same ISAF unit came under fire again from Taliban extremists.

ISAF soldiers defended themselves against the attack.  In the ensuing fire fight, five locals were killed and three others injured.  All wounded were taken to an ISAF base for immediate treatment.  During high-risk medical evacuations, Taliban extremists were still threatening locals and ISAF forces.  The extent of injuries of the wounded is unknown at this time.

“ISAF units operating in the area frequently work with the local people in an effort to bring freedom from the oppression and dangers of Taliban extremists,” said Lieutenant Colonel Claudia Foss, an ISAF spokesperson.  “Such incidents are regrettable, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those killed and wounded in this very unfortunate incident.”

“This is yet another example of Taliban extremists continuing to bring the fight to local communities, endangering innocent Afghans,” Foss added.  “Every effort is being made to provide the best medical treatment to the injured Afghans.”

ISAF personnel are on scene with Afghan authorities investigating the incident and the events that led up to it.

Contact Information ISAF Public Affairs Office
Tel: +93 (0)799 51 1155 - Mobile: 0093 (0) 799 55 8291 pressoffice@hq.isaf.nato.int - www.nato.int/isaf/