Afghan policewoman kills coalition contractor in Kabul: NATO

Mon Dec 24, 2012 6:11am EST
 
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By Mirwais Harooni and Hamid Shalizi

KABUL (Reuters) - An Afghan woman wearing a police uniform shot dead on Monday a civilian contractor working for Western forces in the police chief's compound in Kabul, NATO said.

The incident is likely to raise troubling questions about the direction of an unpopular war.

It appeared to be the first time that a woman member of Afghanistan's security forces carried out such an attack.

There were conflicting reports about the victim.

A spokesman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said a U.S. police adviser was killed by an Afghan policewoman. Then ISAF said in a statement only that it was a "contracted civilian employee" who was killed.

Mohammad Zahir, head of the police criminal investigation department, described the incident as an "insider attack" in which Afghan forces turn their weapons on Western troops they are supposed to be working with. He initially said the victim was a U.S. soldier.

After more than 10 years of war, militants are capable of striking Western targets in the heart of the capital, and foreign forces worry that Afghan police and military forces they are supposed to work with can suddenly turn on them.

The policewoman approached her victim as he was walking in the heavily guarded police chief's compound in a bustling area of Kabul. She then drew a pistol and shot him once, a senior police official told Reuters.   Continued...

 
Afghan policemen stand guard at the site of an incident inside the compound where a U.S. advisor was killed in Kabul, December 24, 2012. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani