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Afghanistan in Turmoil: 330+ Killed in One Week
by Democracy Now (repost)
Thursday May 25th, 2006 8:52 AM
In Afghanistan, more than 330 people have died over the past week in some of the heaviest fighting since the war began almost five years ago. Taliban have moved out of the mountains and seized large areas in the south. We speak with an Afghan human rights activist who was forced to flee the country because of his work documenting human rights abuses committed by U.S. forces.
In Afghanistan, more than 330 people have died over the past week in some of the heaviest fighting since the war began almost five years ago.

On Monday U.S. A-10 fighter jets and Apache helicopter gunships bombed homes in the village of Azizi, west of Kandahar.

The air strikes, which lasted for hours, killed about 100 people including as many as 30 civilians. U.S. officials said the raids targeted Taliban fighters who were involved in a series of deadly attacks last week.

The increase in fighting comes just two months before the United States is scheduled to hand over command of southern Afghanistan to NATO forces.

Fighting has greatly increased in Southern Afghanistan as the Taliban have moved out of the mountains and seized large areas of the region.

Last week the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Army Gen. Karl Eikenberry, admitted that the Taliban are now better trained, armed and organized than in the past. He said the Taliban has adopted tactics used in Iraq including suicide attacks and roadside bombs.

Meanwhile the Afghan government has accused Pakistan of recruiting, training and coordinating attack missions for the Taliban.

Afghan president, Hamid Karzai, said, "Pakistani intelligence gives military training to people and then sends them to Afghanistan with logistics." The Pakistani government has rejected the charge.

For more we are joined by Habib Rahiab - he is an Afghan-born human rights activist. Up until two years ago he lived in Afghanistan where he helped "Human Rights Watch" document human rights abuses committed by U.S. forces -- including some similar to those that later surfaced in the Abu Ghraib scandal in Iraq. He is now a fellow at Harvard Law School.

* Habib Rahiab, Afghan-born human rights activist who was forced to flee Afghanistan two years ago because of his work documenting human rights abuses.

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http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/05/25/1413204