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Russia urges NATO to stop killing Afghan civilians


15:59, January 15, 2013

MOSCOW, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Killing of civilians in Afghanistan by NATO airstrikes has become a vicious trend and must stop, a senior Russian diplomat said on Monday.

"According to reports, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan hit a mosque in the province of Wardak when a morning namaz was held there. Preliminary reports showed civilians were killed," the Russian Foreign Ministry's envoy for human rights, democracy and supremacy of law, Konstantin Dolgov, said in an online comment.

"Such incidents, when the NATO air raids result in killings of civilians and no one bears responsibility for that, become a vicious trend. This is a gross violation of the international humanitarian norms, (and) evidence of ignoring the principle of supremacy of law," Dolgov said.

He said that Moscow urges the ISAF to investigate the incident and avert similar tragedies in the future.

"It is time to stop the actions which increase instability and tension in Afghanistan and in the region," Dolgov said.

Afghan media reported earlier that at least 11 people, including seven civilians, were killed in an ISAF raid on Sunday against insurgents in Wardak Province.

According to the ISAF official website, Afghan and ISAF forces conducted an operation in Sayed Abad district of Wardak Province. During the operation, four armed insurgents were killed.

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