|March 16, 2012
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Warning he's at the "end of the rope" over civilian casualties, Afghanistan's president angrily accused the U.S. on Friday of not sharing information about how an American soldier allegedly shot and killed 16 Afghans in two villages.
The incident has reverberated through the already complicated relations between the U.S. and Afghanistan, endangering talks over a long-term relationship after most U.S. and NATO combat troops withdraw by the end of 2014.
In an emotional meeting with relatives of the shooting victims, Karzai said the villagers' accounts of the massacre were widely different from the scenario depicted by U.S. military officials. The relatives and villagers insisted that it was impossible for one gunmen to kill nine children, four men and three women in three houses of two villages near a U.S. combat outpost in southern Afghanistan.
Karzai pointed to one of the villagers from Panjwai district of Kandahar province and said:
"In his family, in four rooms people were killed - children and women were killed - and then they were all brought together in one room and then set on fire. That, one man cannot do."