British soldiers attacked by furious mob in Kabul after American troops 'ram minibus off road killing one'

British troops were attacked by mob in Kabul today after American troops sparked a riot by ramming a packed minibus off the road, allegedly killing one civilian.

Eyewitnesses said an American armoured personnel carrier smashed into the back  of the minibus, as they raced along a highway on the outskirts of the capital.

'The minibus lost control and and swerved off the road into a crowd of people,' an eyewitness said.

kabul riots

Riot: Police chase stone-throwing protesters through the streets of Kabul. Violence broke out after American troops reportedly ran a minibus off the road


'It looked like there was someone underneath it, dead.'

Both cars were traveling in the same direction when the Americans went into the back of them.

The soldiers then sped off without stopping as an angry crowd gathered around the scene of the accident.

A US military spokesman said: 'The van skidded off the side of the highway and  struck a roadside shop.'


Destruction: A relative of the victim stands next to a damaged shop in the wake of the crash

A similar incident two years ago sparked widespread rioting across the city,  which saw charities and UN properties burnt and looted, and seven people killed.

British troops were called to the scene yesterday, moments after the crash, when a convoy of foreign civilian contractors, who happened to be travelling behind the Americans, were surrounded by the mob.


Distraught: The father of victim

Eyewitnesses said there was a corpse, wrapped in a white shroud driven away in  a taxi.

Afghan police claimed the Brits, based nearby at Camp Souter, opened fire on  the crowd.

Kabul police chief Mohammad Ayoub Salangi said: 'The troops opened fire and  killed one civilian and wounded three more.'

Nato and American officials insisted none of the soldiers fired a shot.

A spokesman for the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force said: 'On their arrival, the patrol found a large crowd surrounding the contractors'  vehicles.

'It can be confirmed that no personnel in this patrol discharged their weapon during the incident.

The crowds hurled rocks and bottles at Afghan police and British Royal Marines,  who came to rescue the contractors.

One said: 'They were mad. People were chanting 'death to Bush,' and 'death to  America' and throwing things at the soldiers.

'Afghans are sick of foreign soldiers killing their people for no reason.'


'Crushed': The body of the victim shrouded in a white sheet is taken away

It came just a day after hundreds of Afghans gathered outside the United  Nations headquarters to protest rising civilian casualties, caused by Nato and  American coalition operations.

International troops are on high alert after a spate of suicide attacks in the  capital.

A military source said: 'Everyone's a bit twitchy at the moment. There are reports of more bombers in the city, and the soldiers were probably scared.'

The incident has raised tensions within the military coalition, with some  soldiers accusing the Americans of being 'gung-ho and careless.'

A car bomb exploded less than 500metres from the American embassy on Thursday.

Today's smash was just metres away from where a British army Signaller  Wayne Bland was killed by a car bomb which hit his convoy in August.


Patrol: Police restore order after the riots

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