UK aid worker was killed by US grenade

British aid worker Linda Norgrove was killed by a grenade thrown by US forces during a rescue attempt in Afghanistan, the Foreign Secretary said today.





The 36-year-old was seized by militants in Kunar province on September 26.



Updating MPs on an investigation into her death on October 8, William Hague told the Commons it was now clear her injuries were caused by a grenade thrown by her rescuers.









Mr Hague said the rescue attempt was carried out in "total darkness" in the Dewagal valley and involved assaults on a series of buildings on a mountainside.



One of two teams sent in to save Ms Norgrove landed near the lower group of buildings and her captors came out fighting.



He said: "A grenade was thrown by a member of the rescue team who feared for his own life and those of the team towards a gully from which some of the insurgents had emerged."



The Foreign Secretary said it was not until the team returned to the area from the higher group of buildings, where they believed Ms Norgrove was being held, that they realised she had been killed.



Mr Hague said: "Linda had been taken by her captors into the gully into which the grenade had been thrown and where her body was now discovered."









The former United Nations employee from the Western Isles was working for the firm Development Alternatives Inc (DAI) when she was captured during an ambush.



Based in Jalalabad, she supervised reconstruction programmes in the eastern region of Afghanistan funded by the US government.



Initial reports suggested she had been killed when one of her captors detonated a suicide vest.



An investigation was launched by the US military when conflicting evidence emerged.



The probe led by a 10-man team in Afghanistan involved sifting through hours of video footage and hundreds of pages of documents, Mr Hague said.



He said: "Although the US soldiers did report their own use of a grenade, this was not immediately reported up the military chain of command.



"It was only on later examination of the video footage that the possibility that a grenade was thrown became known to more senior officers.



"The investigation team found that the failure to disclose information that a grenade was thrown breached US military law.



"As a result, members of the rescue team have been disciplined for failing to provide a complete and full account of their actions in accordance with US military procedure."



An inquest into her death was held in Salisbury, Wiltshire, on October 22, which heard she died of penetrating fragment injuries to her head and chest.



Hundreds attended her funeral at Uig Community Centre on Lewis four days later.



Mr Hague paid tribute to Ms Norgrove's parents John and Lorna who set up a charity foundation in her memory.



He said: "I would like to pay tribute to Linda Norgrove's family, who have shown inspiring strength, dignity and fortitude throughout their terrible ordeal.



"They above all others deserve to have the fullest account possible.



"Throughout the investigation Foreign Office officials have been in close contact with the Norgrove family.



"Linda's parents John and Lorna were briefed yesterday on the outcome of this investigation, and I met them this morning to discuss its findings."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
Joe Cocker performing on the Stravinski hall stage during the Montreux Jazz Festival, in Montreux, Switzerland in 2002
musicHe 'turned my song into an anthem', says former Beatle
News
Clarke Carlisle
sport
Sport
footballStoke City vs Chelsea match report
Arts and Entertainment
theatreThe US stars who've taken to UK panto, from Hasselhoff to Hall
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Life and Style
Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
News
newsIt was due to be auctioned off for charity
News
Coca-Cola has become one of the largest companies in the world to push staff towards switching off their voicemails, in a move intended to streamline operations and boost productivity
peopleCoca-Cola staff urged to switch it off to boost productivity
Environment
Sir David Attenborough
environment... as well as a plant and a spider
Voices
'That's the legal bit done. Now on to the ceremony!'
voicesThe fight for marriage equality isn't over yet, says Siobhan Fenton
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Regulatory / Compliance / Exeter

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: Exeter - An excellent opportunity for a Solici...

Ashdown Group: IT Support Technician - 12 Month Fixed Term - Shrewsbury

£17000 - £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Helpdesk Support Technician - 12 ...

The Jenrick Group: Maintenance Planner

£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Maintenance...

The Jenrick Group: World Wide PLC Service Engineer

£30000 - £38000 per annum + pesion + holidays: The Jenrick Group: World Wide S...

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there