White House Won't Say What Will Happen to Troops Who Burned Korans

March 8, 2012 - 5:33 PM

Hamid Karzai, Barack Obama

Afghan President Hamid Karzai and U.S. President Barack Obama at the presidential palace in Kabul in 2010. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

(CNSNews.com) – In the face of Afghan President Hamid Karzai's call for the U.S. troops who burned Korans to be tried and punished, the White House won't say what will happen to those troops.

Connie Lawn with IRN/USA Radio Network asked White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, “Did Karzai ever express condolences for the British soldiers killed and did he explicitly apologize for the American soldiers who were killed? And what does the White House want to see done with these Americans who burned the Korans?”

“I think there is an investigation into that,” Carney responded. “You surely understand that I would not make any statements about the disposition of that investigation or how it should turn out. Secondly, I don’t have any more detail for you on the call the president had with President Karzai. I would point you to statements by Minister Wardak about the incidents and his expressions of regret,” Carney said referring to Afghanistan Defense Minister General Abdul Rahim Wardak

The Korans were mistakenly burned on Bagram Air Force Base.

Obama spoke with Karzai by video conference earlier Thursday, Carney said.

As CNSNews.com reported, three days after Obama issued an apology to Karzai for the burning of the Muslim holy book, Karzai responded on Afghan TV that the soldiers should be tried.

In late February, Karzai, according to a BBC translation of his remarks, told the Afghan people, “We call on the US government to bring the perpetrators of the act to justice and put them on trial and punish them.”

At the same time Karzai was demanding the prosecution and punishment of U.S. troops involved in the Koran-burning incident, he conceded that the U.S. government had indicated that the Koran burning “was not deliberate.”

"We all know that regrettably some days ago an American soldier burnt our Holy Koran,” Karzai said, according to the BBC translation. “We condemn this vicious act in the strongest terms. The government and the people, scholars, tribal dignitaries, spiritual figures of Afghanistan, the educated people of our country all share the people's feelings... Our people's sensitiveness is right and is laudable.

“The US government says that such act was carried out because of ignorance and lack of knowledge,” Karzai said. “This incident happened as a result of the ignorance of the US military officer about our vision about Islam and not recognizing the Koran. It was not deliberate.”