Quran burning sparks outrage

By: AP
By: AP
JALALABAD, Afghanistan -- Demonstrators battled police in southern Afghanistan

The Associated Press
Afghan protesters walk with sticks during a demonstration to condemn the burning of a copy of the Quran by a Florida pastor, in Kandahar, Afghanistan on Saturday.

JALALABAD, Afghanistan -- Demonstrators battled police in southern Afghanistan's main city on Sunday and took to the streets in the turbulent east for the first time as Western pleas failed to halt a third day of rage over a Florida pastor's burning of the Quran.

An officer was shot dead in a second day of clashes in the city of Kandahar, said provincial health director Qayum Pokhla. Two officers and 18 civilians were wounded, he said. In Jalalabad, the largest city in the east, hundreds of people blocked the main highway for three hours, shouting for U.S. troops to leave, burning an effigy of President Barack Obama and stomping on a drawing of a U.S. flag. More than 1,000 people set tires ablaze to block another highway in eastern Parwan province for about an hour, said provincial police chief Sher Ahmad Maladani.

The violence was set off by anger over the March 20 burning of the Quran by a Florida church -- the same church whose pastor had threatened to do so last year on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, triggering worldwide outrage. By Rahim Faiez and Rahmat Gul.


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