Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Sayed Salahuddin, "Afghanistan wants law to curb foreign troops," National Post, May 11, 2009.

[According to Steven Staples at, the Canadian military "is engaging in a lobbying campaign to have a squadron of our CF-18 Hornet fighter bombers deployed to Afghanistan." The Afghan parliament (Wolesi Jirga) is calling for an arrangement that differs from arrangements called "Status of Forces Agreements" which normally guarantee that American soldiers in foreign countries will be tried by American tribunals. Deaths of civilians caused by airstrikes have been an issue since American planes bombed a wedding in July 2002. Outrage for the same reason is has been growing in Pakistan since the Bush administration started sending drones across the border. The war has taken on an increasingly American focus since January. The northern part of Afghanistan is supposed to be relatively secure, but two mass poisonings at girls' schools in the northern town of Charikar during the last two weeks have raised questions about just how secure that may be. Police refused to comment. The war is not going well. -jlt]

KABUL -- Afghan lawmakers on Monday demanded legal restrictions on foreign forces fighting in their country, to prevent further civilian deaths, then closed for half a day to protest the latest casualties from U.S. air strikes.

The attacks on homes packed with civilians, during a protracted battle last week, have damaged ties with Washington and stoked popular anger about the presence of western troops, over rising non-combatant deaths.

  "When a foreign soldier acts contrary to the law of Afghanistan, he should be prosecuted according to Afghanistan's law,"
Abdul Sattar Khawaasi
Secretary, Wolesi Jirga

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