Afghan Governor Says NATO Strikes Killed 27 Civilians

(RFE/RL) July 11, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- An Afghan provincial governor says a local government investigation found 27 civilians were killed in NATO-led air strikes last week.

Shalizi Didar, governor of Afghanistan's northeastern province of Konar, said 37 Taliban militants were also killed in the air raids in Watapur district on July 5 and 6.

NATO said it was not aware of the civilian casualties.

Meanwhile today, Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned a suicide bombing in the southern province of Oruzgan on July 10 that killed 17 people, 12 of them schoolchildren. Eight Dutch soldiers were among the wounded.

Karzai condemned the perpetrators for killing innocent civilians. He also accused insurgents of escaping from combat or capture by hiding under women's all-covering burqas.

(with material from AFP, AP)