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NATO troops' warning shots kill Afghan taxi occupant
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14:55, November 17, 2007

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The troops of NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) have fired warning shots at a taxi for approaching an ISAF patrol convoy in southern Afghan province of Kandahar, resulting in the death of one taxi occupant and serious injury of another, the alliance said.

"The taxi had approached an ISAF patrol convoy, and had ignored visual signs to stop," the ISAF said in a statement released late Friday. "Warning shots were fired and the ISAF troops then carried on with their patrol."

Two Afghan occupants of the taxi were seriously injured by the shooting and one of the men later died of gun shot wounds, according to the statement.

"An official investigation has been launched," the statement said.

"ISAF reserves the right to self defense, but every effort is made to avoid risk to civilian life while also dealing with the potential insurgent threat posed by vehicle born suicide bombers," said Antony McCord, an ISAF spokesman for Regional Command South, while expressing regret over the loss of innocent civilian lives.

"Afghan citizens are urged to comply with the warning signs in order to prevent these incidents," the spokesman said.

Currently over 50,000 foreign troops are fighting militants and assisting in reconstruction in post-Taliban Afghanistan.

Source: Xinhua

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