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Afghan President: US Military Torturing, Murdering Innocent Civilians

President Hamid Karzai had ordered the Ministry of Defense to kick out the US Special Forces

Craig Brown, staff writer

Afghan President Hamid Karzai speaks during a news conference in Kabul January 14, 2013. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani

President Hamid Karzai and the Afghan government said Sunday that troops belonging to the U.S. military's special forces are “harassing, torturing and murdering innocent civilians.”

The U.S. military says it is investigating.

Karzai ordered NATO's International Security Assistance Force to stop all special force operations out in Afghan's Wardak province and demanded that all U.S. special forces must be gone from the province within two weeks.

Karzai's office released a statement from a Sunday morning meeting of Afghanistan's National Security Council, chaired by President Hamid Karzai, "it became clear that armed individuals named as U.S. special force stationed in Wardak province engage in harassing, annoying, torturing and even murdering innocent people."

"A recent example in the province is an incident in which nine people were disappeared in an operation by this suspicious force and in a separate incident a student was taken away at night from his home, whose tortured body with throat cut was found two days later under a bridge. However, Americans reject having conducted any such operation and any involvement of their special force. The meeting strongly noted that such actions have caused local public resentment and hatred," the statement said.

Aimal Faizi, spokesman for President Karzai, told a press conference Sunday: "People have been complaining about US special forces units torturing and killing people in that province and nine individuals were taken from their homes recently and they have just disappeared and no one knows where they have gone. These individuals in the US special forces, who are behind these crimes like murdering and torturing people and harassing people, this is in itself an elemental factor in the deteriorating security situation."

"In today's [weekly] national security council meeting, Afghan President Hamid Karzai ordered the ministry of defense to kick out the US special forces from Wardak ... within two weeks," Faizi said.

Faizi said that the Afghan government wants the individuals to be handed over to the government.

Last week President Karzai banned Afghan forces from calling in US or NATO airstrikes on residential areas, following the deaths of 10 civilians on a raid in the eastern Kunar province.

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