Two U.S. troops killed near protest of Quran burning
Afghans show copies of Qurans allegedly set fire during a protest this week outside Bagram Airfield.
February 23rd, 2012
10:35 AM ET

Two U.S. troops killed near protest of Quran burning

[Updated at 10:35 a.m. ET] Two American troops were killed in Afghanistan on Thursday near a demonstration where people were protesting the burning of Qurans by NATO troops.

The troops were killed by a person wearing an Afghan National Army uniform, a U.S. official said, asking not to be named discussing casualties.

The troops are among at least nine people who have been killed near or amid demonstrations that have erupted in Afghanistan since the burning of the Islamic religious material by NATO troops at the beginning of the week. It is not clear if the troops were killed in revenge for the burning of Qurans, but the attack occurred at a base outside of which the demonstration was taking place, a local official said.

The protest and shootings came as the Taliban called on Muslims to attack NATO military bases and convoys and kill its soldiers following the admission that NATO troops had incinerated Islamic religious material at Bagram Airfield.

Afghan officials investigating the Quran burning urged Afghans to respond wisely and avoid protests "that pave the ground for the enemies of peace," they said in a statement Thursday.

[Initial post, 8:09 a.m. ET] President Barack Obama apologized to Afghan President Hamid Karzai for the burning of Qurans by NATO troops, calling the act an inadvertent error, Karzai's office and National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said Thursday.

"We will take the appropriate steps to avoid any recurrence, including holding accountable those responsible," Obama said in the letter, according to Karzai's office.

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered outside the airfield Tuesday, furious over reports of the burning.

Belief Blog: Rioting over Quran burning is un-Islamic, scholar argues

Some Qurans and other Islamic religious materials gathered for disposal from a detention facility at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan were improperly burned, the commander of the International Security Assistance Force said Tuesday.

"This was not a decision that was made because they were religious materials," Gen. John Allen said. "It was not a decision that was made with respect to the faith of Islam. It was a mistake. It was an error. The moment we found out about it, we immediately stopped and we intervened."

soundoff (188 Responses)
  1. Vern

    We need to leave! That is not a good place for out troops to die. Leave them alone and they will kill each other.

    February 24, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • General Mehdi Dr Bad

      Go Tell president Hillary Clinton.

      February 24, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jexhu

    If they are so sencitive about their Qumran why do they chose to send covert message in them that will put US service men and women in harm. This is not about religion its about the safety of our service men and women if they chose send messages in the sacred Qumran thats how it will be handled thats what the need to know.

    February 24, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andreas Moser

      Qumran is something altogether different from the Quran.

      February 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dott

      This mess is merely an excuse to kill Americans. We are not welcome there so bring our troops home. Wish we had some leaders in power who cares.

      February 24, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Report abuse |
  3. General Mehdi Dr Bad

    It was an ACCIDENT !!! = Some Woman Did It.

    February 24, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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