Afghan player killed by foreign forces

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Rahmat Wali, who played for Afghanistan between 2001-06 was killed by international forces using poison gas and grenade.

Updated: September 03, 2008 08:12 IST
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A former member of Afghanistan's cricket team has been killed in an overnight raid by international forces on his home, officials and former colleagues alleged on Wednesday.

Rahmat Wali, 32, who played for the war-torn country's national team between 2001 and 2006, was killed when troops attacked his home in the eastern province of Khost, the national team captain, Nawrooz Khan Mangal said.

"Foreign troops attacked Rahmat Wali's home last night. They locked him up in a room and used poison gas and then a hand grenade. He was found dead today (Wednesday)," Mangal told AFP.

He said Wali had no ties to Taliban or other insurgents.

"He had no links to Taliban or any other opposition. He was a great player. His death is a big loss for Afghans and the sports community," Mangal added.

The US-led coalition and the separate NATO-led International Security Assistance Force, which together have about 70,000 troops in Afghanistan, could not immediately confirm their involvement in the alleged incident.

They did, however, say that they would check the information.

Arsala Jamal, the provincial governor for the troubled province, said the former player had been killed by international troops.

"I can confirm this," the governor told AFP after being asked if the sportsman had died in such a raid, but he refused to provide details or to further substantiate his statement.

Shahzada Massoud, the chairman of Afghanistan's Cricket Federation and an adviser to President Hamid Karzai, also said Wali was killed but had no details.

The allegations come days after the US-led force killed 90 civilians in air strikes against Taliban militants in the western province of Herat.

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