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Afghan parliament urges prosecution of US soldiers for fatal wreck, riots

[JURIST] Lawmakers in Afghanistan [JURIST news archive] have called for the prosecution of US soldiers for a vehicle accident that killed as many as five Afghans and set off deadly riots [AP report] earlier this week in the capital of Kabul. The nonbinding motion, passed in the Afghan Parliament Tuesday, calls for the soldiers to be handed over to Afghan authorities. A US military spokesman said that the driver of the truck, which slammed into a line of cars on Monday, had not been arrested and that a brake failure is the likely cause of the accident. The spokesman said the US Defense Department [official website] was investigating whether the soldiers had fired at or toward angry demonstrators. After stoning the US convoy, the mob looted the offices of international aid organizations.

The Afghan Health Ministry estimates that 20 people were killed in the violence, which was the worst in Kabul since the fall of the Taliban in late 2001. While condemning the violence, the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission [advocacy website] has likewise urged military and Afghan authorities [press release] "to identify and prosecute the perpetrators of the incident." AP has more.

5:18 PM ET - US President Bush on Wednesday told Afghan President Hamid Karzai that the US would conduct a full investigation into the accident and ensuing riots. AP has more.

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