Five wounded during protest by sacked officers in Kabul
KABUL: Five people were wounded on Sunday after Afghan troops opened fire in Kabul to disperse hundreds of sacked defence ministry officers who had forced their way into the ministry to demand outstanding pay, officials said.
“A protestor pulled out a gun and shot at the soldiers on guard inside the building,” Defence Ministry Spokesman Mohammad Zahir Hazimi said.
Ministry guards shot into the ceiling of the main ministry building to disperse the protestors but did not shoot directly at the demonstrators, who had smashed windows and the door trying to get in, Mr Hazimi said.
Several demonstrators interviewed by AFP however accused the guards of opening fire on the crowd.
Dozens of AK-47 and pistol shell cases could be seen lying on the ground in front of the building and between the building and a main gate.
There were bullet holes in the ceiling of the building, broken windows and two sets of doors had been smashed open.
“We were going to talk with them when the demonstrators didn’t listen to us and started to open fire,” Mr Hazimi said.
Four protestors were wounded, one in serious condition, he said. They had been taken to hospital. Hazimi said one of the four was injured by shots from the demonstrators but he did not know how the others were wounded.
An International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) spokesman said five people had been injured. —AFP