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Quran Burning Protests Continue in Kabul

In Kabul, students shout anti-U.S. slogans during a protest against the burning of a Koran supervised by Florida-based militant fundamentalist Christian preacher, April 5, 2011

Protests erupted for a fifth day in Afghanistan over the burning of a Quran by a U.S. pastor.

Hundreds of people rallied at Kabul University in the capital Tuesday, chanting "death to America" and calling for the pastor who burned the Muslim holy book to be put on trial.

Afghan police in riot gear guarded the area as the peaceful protest took place.

It came one day after hundreds of stone-throwing demonstrators scuffled with police during a rally in the provincial capital of eastern Laghman province.

The protests stem from the March 20 burning of a Quran by the head of a small fundamentalist church in the southern U.S. state of Florida.

Officials say at least 19 people have died and 100 people have been wounded in Afghanistan since Friday when the demonstrations began. In the deadliest incident, seven foreign United Nations staff members were killed in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif when protesters attacked a U.N. compound.

U.S. president Barack Obama and the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, have condemned the Quran burning.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.