Polish soldiers accused of war crimes in Afghanistan

A common market place in an Afghan village

Six Polish soldiers are now facing charges of murder and breaches of international law conventions due to their fatal actions in an Afghan village on August 16th this year. A 7th soldier has also been brought before the courts but faces lighter charges. Six civilians, including two children, were the victims of machine gunfire and mortar assaults. Allegations are rife that it was a revenge attack after a roadside bomb had killed a Polish soldier in the same area just a few hours previous.

The prosecutor in the case alleges the soldiers, members of Poland's 1,200 strong contingent in the NATO led occupation of Afghanistan, were sent to the village but found no Taliban fighters there. Despite this they opened fire on civilians indiscriminately. Furthermore, it seems the prosecutor has his hands on video evidence of the events which the soldiers recorded. To date, no evidence has been provided to prove the soldier's claims that their security were at risk from the Taliban.

Meanwhile a poll by SMG/KRC for the popular daily 'Fakt' asserts that 58% of Poles believe the soldiers military commanders should also be held responsible for the attack on Nangar Khel village.

Some of the injured victims remain in Polish hospitals while they recover.

Life imprisonment awaits the six accused if they are found guilty.


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