German Defense Minister in Afghanistan as Tensions Rise | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 03.09.2008
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German Defense Minister in Afghanistan as Tensions Rise

With German troops tense about the growing risk of Taliban attacks, German Defense Minister Franz Josef Jung traveled to Afghanistan on an unannounced visit.

Defense Minister Franz-Josef Jung speaks with German soldiers in Kunduz

Jung met with German troops in Kunduz

Jung met on Tuesday, Sept. 2, with a tribal leader near Kunduz and conveyed Germany's condolences over the shooting deaths of an Afghan woman and two children.

They were killed last Thursday evening when German troops at a roadblock opened fire on a car when it ignored an order to stop.

"I expressed our shock and our sympathy," said Jung after the meeting with Haji Amanullah Otmansai, a Pashtun leader.

Jung said he assured him the German army was doing everything it could to prevent civilian casualties. German prosecutors have been conducting a routine inquiry into whether the shooting was allowed under German rules of engagement.

Tension has been high in the German contingent amid an upsurge of both attacks and warnings of attacks, German soldiers say. Last week a German soldier was killed when a remote-controlled bomb went off near an armored vehicle.

At a briefing, Jung was told that security had "markedly deteriorated" with a growing risk of attack on the Germans by booby traps, missiles, ambushes and suicide bombers.

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