Kabul: A US service member was detained Sunday for allegedly shooting Afghan civilians, a NATO forces spokesman said.
Multiple Afghan civilians were wounded, though none killed, in the shooting incident earlier in the day in Kandahar province in the south of the country, said Capt. Justin Brockhoff, a spokesman for the coalition`s forces in Afghanistan.
Brockhoff said the shooting did not occur inside a NATO or US base but did not provide further details on how or why it happened. He said it was not clear if the alleged shooter knew the victims.
The service member is being held at a NATO base and US forces are investigating the shooting in cooperation with Afghan authorities, Brockhoff said.
The wounded Afghans were receiving care at NATO medical facilities, he added.
The shooting comes after weeks of tense relations between US forces and their Afghan hosts following the burning of Qurans and other religious materials at an American base. Though US officials apologized and said the burning was an accident, the incident sparked violent protests and attacks that killed some 30 people. Six US troops have been killed in attacks by their supposed Afghan colleagues since the Quran burnings came to light.
Meanwhile, a prominent Afghan women`s rights activist said gunmen attacked her office in a western province overnight in an apparent assassination attempt.
Malalai Joya, a former Afghan lawmaker and vocal critic of both the Taliban and of criminality in the Afghan government, said the attack on her office in Farah province was the sixth attempt on her life to date.
Armed men tried to storm the compound late in the night on Saturday, she said. The attackers did not get into the building but two of her guards were seriously injured and are currently in the hospital.
Joya said she was in Kabul at the time but had planned a trip to Farah soon and news of that may have leaked out. She said she believes the attackers thought she was in the building.