aircraft

WRAP Merkel addresses parl on NATO airstrike; German troops in Kunduz; protest

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(8 Sep 2009) SHOTLIST
FILE – Omar Khel, Afghanistan – 4 September 2009
1. Pan across charred wreckage of two fuel tankers as men walk towards camera
2. Various of soldiers and locals looking at charred wreckage of oil tankers strewn across Kunduz river
Berlin, Germany – 8 September 2009
3. Various exteriors of German parliament
4. SOUNDBITE (German) Angela Merkel, German Chancellor:
“Every innocent person who dies in Afghanistan is one too many.”
5. Cutaway German Defence Minister, Franz Josef Jung
6. SOUNDBITE (German) Angela Merkel, German Chancellor:
“I stand for the fact that we don’t want to cover anything up but we will not accept premature judgments.”
7. Wide of parliament
8. Cutaway photographers
PLEASE NOTE – AP WAS EMBEDDED WITH GERMAN MILITARY AND SUBJECT TO GERMAN MILITARY REPORTING RESTRICTIONS
Kunduz, Afghanistan – 7 September 2009
9. Troops disembarking from helicopter, with second helicopter coming into land
10. German troops standing in front of vehicle
11. Troops on board armoured vehicle
12. Troops looking at map
13. Soldier putting on kit
Kunduz, Afghanistan – 8 September 2009
14. Armoured vehicle driving away
15. Troops inside armoured vehicle
16. Armoured vehicles driving away
Berlin, Germany – 8 September 2009
17. Wide of anti-war protest in front of Brandenburg Gate in Berlin
18. Mid of banner reading (in German): “NATO out of Afghanistan”
19. Mid of protesters carrying flags, signs
20. Close of The Left Party’s Chairman, Gregor Gysi, speaking on stage
21. Close up of banner reading (in German): “German troops out of Afghanistan”
22. SOUNDBITE (German) Michael Eld, Protester:
“We demand the German military to be pulled out of Afghanistan and an end to the war there. Of course the question is how the war can be stopped, there the suggestion is to get Afghans to find a solution themselves.”
23. Wide of protesters listening to speaker at Brandenburg Gate
STORYLINE
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday that the world should reserve judgment on whether civilians were killed in a German-ordered airstrike in Afghanistan, even as NATO said it believed that civilians had died in the attack.
The NATO-led force announced that it believed after a preliminary review that civilians had been killed and wounded along with insurgents in the strike last week on two hijacked tanker trucks in the northern province of Kunduz.
It said the top United State and NATO commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, had appointed a Canadian major general to lead an investigation along with officers from the US Air Force and German military.
Merkel asserted in a nearly simultaneous speech to Germany’s parliament that reports about civilian victims were still contradictory.
“I stand for the fact that we don’t want to cover anything up but we will not accept premature judgments,” she said.
Merkel said she had given the same message to NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
She did not address any details of the airstrike or the events that led to it.
Merkel pledged German support for a thorough investigation of the airstrike and did not discount the possibility that civilians had been killed.
In Kunduz province on Tuesday, German forces in the region continued their daily patrol routine.
McChrystal ordered commanders in June to be sure any targets were clear of civilians before calling in an airstrike, hoping to reduce the growing number of Afghan civilian deaths, which have damaged the credibility of international troops.
Germany had been one of the harshest critics of using airstrikes as part of the mission.
But a recent jump in attacks on their troops have resulted in a change in tactics.

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