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GIs reportedly kill Afghan police by mistake

U.S. troops killed four Afghan policemen and wounded another after mistaking them for militants during an operation in Afghanistan, a local official said Tuesday.
/ Source: Reuters

U.S. troops killed four Afghan policemen and wounded another after mistaking them for militants during an operation in southern Afghanistan, a senior local official said on Tuesday.

The U.S. military in Kabul said it had no information about the incident, the second of its kind this month.

Kandahar province Gov. Assadullah Khalid said Monday night’s killings in Maiwand district came after police fired into the air from their checkpoint.

“The U.S. soldiers were on a hunt for Taliban on the basis of a tip-off when the shot was fired in the sky and the soldiers thought it was the enemy who fired it,” Khalid said.

“They fired on them and after overruning the checkpoint, found that they had killed four police and wounded another by mistake,” he told reporters.

Earlier this month U.S. troops mistook some policemen for militants during a hunt in the adjacent province of Helmand, again killing four and wounding another.

The U.S. military, which leads some 20,000 foreign troops hunting militants in Afghanistan, confirmed that incident.

Nearly 11,00 people -- most of them militants, but including more than 50 U.S. soldiers -- have been killed in Afghanistan this year, the bloodiest period since 2001.