26 July 2008

PR# 2008-348

ISAF escalation of force incident, 4 civilians dead and three others wounded

KABUL, Afghanistan — ISAF soldiers opened fire on a vehicle that failed to stop at a check point earlier today killing four civilian occupants  and wounding three others.  Two further occupants were unharmed.

The incident occurred in the Sangin district of Helmand Province.  The vehicle approached the check point and was directed to stop but it drove on. ISAF soldiers fired warning shots in a safe direction away from the vehicle but were eventually forced to fire at it when it refused to stop, fearing an insurgent attack.

The injured civilians were treated for their injuries by ISAF medical personnel at the scene and were taken to Camp Inkerman for further checks. They were then taken by helicopter to Camp Bastion hospital where they arrived at 0900 hours for further treatment.

The bodies of the four civilians who died were taken back to their village by the two civilians who were uninjured in the incident. Both indicated that the driver of the vehicle was at fault for failing to stop when required to do so.

ISAF deeply regrets this unnecessary incident caused by the reckless actions of the vehicle driver.  The incident will be investigated.

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/