Karzai condemns video of urination on corpses
Published : Jan 13, 2012 - 10:49
Updated : Jan 13, 2012 - 11:06

 WASHINGTON (AP) — Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Thursday condemned a video depicting what appears to be four U.S. Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai adjusts his coat, as he speaks during a gathering to mark the 40th death anniversary of political leader Khan Abdul Samad Khan Achekzai in Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011 (AP)

A presidential statement described the act as "completely inhumane" and called on the U.S. military to punish the Marines.

The Marine Corps said Wednesday it is investigating the YouTube video but has not yet verified its origin or authenticity. The case has being referred to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Navy's worldwide law enforcement organization.

The Afghan Ministry of Defense also condemned the actions in the video, which it described as "shocking."

The NATO-led security force in Afghanistan released a statement Thursday saying, "This disrespectful act is inexplicable and not in keeping with the high moral standards we expect of coalition forces."

The International Security Assistance Force said the actions "appear to have been conducted by a small group of U.S. individuals, who apparently are no longer serving in Afghanistan." The statement did not identify the personnel or explain why the ISAF thought they had left the country.

Sen. John McCain, a Navy veteran who fought in the Vietnam war, said the incident "makes me so sad."

McCain, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, called the Marine Corps one of America's strongest institutions and said its image has apparently been tarnished by "a handful of obviously undisciplined people."

Appearing Thursday on "CBS This Morning," the Arizona Republican said, "There should be an investigation and these young people should be punished."

On Wednesday, the Council on Islamic-American Relations, a prominent Muslim civil rights and advocacy group based in Washington, protested the video in a letter faxed to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.

"We condemn this apparent desecration of the dead as a violation of our nation's military regulations and of international laws of war prohibiting such disgusting and immoral actions," the group wrote.

"If verified as authentic, the video shows behavior that is totally unbecoming of American military personnel and that could ultimately endanger other soldiers and civilians," the letter said.

Marine Corps headquarters at the Pentagon said: "The actions portrayed are not consistent with our core values and are not indicative of the character of the Marines in our Corps. This matter will be fully investigated."

A Marine Corps spokesman, Lt. Col. Stewart Upton, added, "Allegations of Marines not doing the right thing in regard to dead Taliban insurgents are very serious and, if proven, represent a failure to adhere to the high standards expected of American military personnel."

A Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt. John Kirby, said the video is deeply troubling.

"Whoever it is, and whatever the circumstances — which we know is under investigation — it is egregious behavior," Kirby said.

It is unclear who shot the video and who posted it online.



카르자이 "소변 동영상 미군 엄벌해야"

하미드 카르자이 아프가니스탄  대통 령과 탈레반은 12일(현지시간) 미국 해병대원들이 탈레반 병사들의 시신에 소변을 보는 동영상에 대해 강도 높게 비난했다.

카르자이 대통령은 이날 성명을 통해 "미군 병사들의 행위는 그야말로 비인간적 이고 강하게 비난해 마땅하다"면서 "미국 정부에 이 영상을 신속하게 조사해 죄가 밝혀진 이들을 엄벌하라고 분명히 요구했다"고 말했다.

10년간 계속된 전쟁을 끝내려고 미국과 협상하는 탈레반은 최근 인터넷에  공개 된 동영상에 대해 "미군 병사의 비인간적이고 야만적인 행동"이라고 말했다.

그러나 자비훌라 무자헤드 탈레반 대변인은 이번 동영상 파문 때문에 미국과의 평화 협상이 난관에 부딪히지는 않을 것이라고 설명했다.

미 국방부는 리언 패네타 국방장관이 카르자이 아프간 대통령에게 전화를 걸어 이번 사건이 "매우 개탄스럽다"면서 즉각 조사할 것을 약속했다고 전했다. 패네타 장관은 해병대와 아프간 주둔 나토(북대서양조약기구) 국제안보지원군(ISAF)에 사건 조사를 명령했다.

한편, 동영상에 나온 미 해병의 소속 부대와 신원이 일부 드러났다.

이름을 밝히지 않은 해병대 관계자는 해병대원 4명이 3대대 2연대 소속이며  이 들 가운데 2명의 신원을 확인했다고 말했다. 그는 이어 해당 부대는 아프간에서  지 난해 가을 미국 노스캐롤라이나주(州)의 기지로 복귀했다고 덧붙였다.

이 사건은 해군범죄수사대(NCIS)가 조사하고 있다.

이번 동영상은 아프간과 중동 전역에서 반미 감정에 기름을 끼얹을 것이란 우려 가 나오고 있다. 아프간에서는 최근 몇 년 사이 미군이 코란을 모독했다는 보도가 나왔을 때 2차례 격렬한 시위가 일어난 적이 있다.