Sunday, October 14, 2007

afghan civilian death compensation scheme

Over 155 Afghan civilians died in ground military operations, aerial strikes and suicide attacks by Taliban insurgents, US, NATO and Afghan government forces in September alone according to the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission

In May 2007 the AIHRC found that US soldiers used "indiscriminate shooting and excessive force" during an incident on 4 March in Nangarhar Province in which at least 11 civilians were reportedly killed. [ ]

Only a few of the over 30 nations that have contributed troops to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan provide modest ad hoc "condolence" payments to the families of civilians who die in their military operations, a spokesman for ISAF said.
The rights watchdog said the US army formally apologised to the affected local people and paid a "condolence" sum of US$2,000 to each directly affected family. That is quite some amount, lets compare that to what is paid to Nato troops. Ben Parkinson a UK soldier who received multiple injuries in Afghanistan will receive 285K GBP ($580k) in compensation plus a comprehensive package of health and other sort of assistance. Another case was an RAF typist reported to have received a £484,000 (around 1million dollars) civil payout after injuring a thumb. UK wounded service personnel will continue to benefit from tax-free, index-linked guaranteed payments to compensate for loss of earnings.

The difference is Nato troops kill people when they are at their homes while Nato soldiers are in Afghanistan to fight and obviously dieing comes with it. the other difference is a Nato troop costs several hundred times more than an afghan civilian.
The AIHRC has, however, repeatedly demanded the establishment of a regular and fair "compensatory" mechanism which would provide financial assistance to families affected in armed conflicts.

"There must be a transparent system of payments to the families of every civilian victim of armed conflict, in conformity with Afghanistan's domestic laws," Hamidi maintained.
According to Afghanistan's current penal code, a person who mistakenly kills an individual should pay Islamic compensation ('Diyat') equivalent to the price of 40 camels to the affected family - roughly $25,000.