Correction to This Article
An item from the Associated Press, about an Israeli Supreme Court ruling giving Palestinians access to a section of West Bank highway previously closed to them, incorrectly said that Israel reserves some roads for Jews. The country closes some roads to virtually all Palestinians, but they are open to all Israeli citizens and to other nationals, regardless of religious background.

World Digest: Afghanistan's Karzai, NATO clash over reports of civilian deaths

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Karzai, NATO clash over civilian deaths

Afghan government and foreign military officials sparred Tuesday over reports that 10 civilians died during a military operation Sunday -- claims that further inflamed public sentiment against the international military presence as tens of thousands of additional U.S. and allied troops prepare to deploy.

Also Tuesday, NATO said a U.S. service member died in a shooting in northwestern Afghanistan.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai expressed anger over the alleged deaths Sunday of civilians -- who he said included eight young students -- in a village in the eastern province of Konar. A NATO official said initial reports from troops involved in the fighting had identified the victims as insurgents.

The reported incident is the most serious allegation of accidental killings of civilians by Western forces since early December, when Afghan officials said 12 civilians were killed in an airstrike in neighboring Laghman province. An investigation into that incident continues.

A delegation of government officials and lawmakers, appointed by Karzai, met with Konar provincial officials Tuesday to probe the latest allegations.

NATO offered no details on the U.S. service member killed Tuesday, but Afghan Gen. Jalander Shah Bahnam said the American was killed and two Italian soldiers were injured when an Afghan soldier opened fire on a base in the Bala Murghab district of Badghis province.

-- Associated Press


Law sets up vote on south's autonomy

Sudan's parliament on Tuesday passed a law governing a southern vote on independence, ending months of wrangling between the partners in the north-south coalition government.

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