Saturday, April 2, 2011

Two UN staff beheaded and five others murdered in protest against U.S. pastor who burnt Koran - 2nd Apr 2011

(image) Victim: The first named victim is 53-year-old Norwegian pilot Lt. Col Siri Skare who was working as a UN military advisor in the country.

At least seven United Nations staff were murdered - two by beheading - after extremists stormed their compound in northern Afghanistan today.

According to reports, protesters in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif beheaded two U.N. guards, seized their weapons and began shooting those inside the compound after a demonstration against Koran burnings in the U.S. turned violent.

Reports emerged tonight that the Taliban had claimed responsibility for the attacks, saying they were part of a campaign of violence in the run up to presidential elections.

The bloodshed is the worst attack on the U.N. in Afghanistan since the war began in 2001.

At least four Afghan workers were also killed and officials fear the total death toll could rise to 20.

The rampage began when over a thousand protesters flooded into the streets after Friday prayers where they heard reports about the Koran burnings in America last month.

After slaying the guards, the armed mob scaled the compound's blast walls before setting fire to a guard tower and several other buildings.

An Afghan police source, who asked not to be named, said the chief of the mission in the city was wounded but survived.

Among those murdered were Norwegian, Romanian, Swedish and Nepalese nationals. Two were decapitated, it is understood.

And tonight pastor Terry Jones, the man many hold responsible for instigating the wave of protests, remained defiant over his decision to hold the Koran burning, saying it was time for 'Islam to be held accountable'. Read More