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Dasht-i-Leili massacre

The Dasht-i-Leili massacre occurred in December 2001 when hundreds of Taliban prisoners were suffocated in metal truck containers while being transferred by U.S and Northern Alliance soldiers to prison from Kunduz, Afghanistan. Bodies which are believed to be the ones of the victims have been discovered in the desert region of Dasht-i-Leili, near Sheberghan.

The exact number of victims is still not known because there was no count of those loaded onto the trucks nor of prisoners who made it to the prison. Also, the United Nations refuses to investigate the mass graves unless accompanied by international military support, which has yet to be promised.

In August 2002, Abdul Rashid Dostum and a rival warlord admitted that more than 200 prisoners died in the airless containers, but blamed the deaths on wounds and illnesses before capture. The documentary Afghan Massacre: The Convoy of Death (directed by Jamie Doran) documents the evidence based largely on the work of award-winning Afghan journalist Najibullah Quraishi, who claims he has seen video evidence of the survivors of the convoy being executed in the desert under supervision of US soldiers, but that he was beaten up when the sale of the video was supposed to take place. In the documentary he is shown recovering from the wounds in a "safe house", and the filmmakers have speculated that Rashid Dostum, believed to be in large part responsible for the massacre, is keeping the video under wraps to blackmail the United States into keeping him in power.

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