Afghan journalists have expressed anger over the killing of a local reporter during the rescue operation that saved his British-Irish colleague.

Sultan Munadi and Stephen Farrell were kidnapped by Taliban rebels on Saturday in northern Afghanistan, where they were interviewing residents about a NATO missile strike that is alleged to have killed civilians.

An airborne raid by British forces yesterday freed Mr Farrell, but Mr Munadi was caught in the crossfire and died.

His body was left behind by foreign forces, Afghan journalists and media reports said.

A friend of Mr Munadi's family said the soldiers had traced the house where the two journalists were held by tracking signals from the journalist's mobile phone.

'He had called his parents and talked to them at 10.30pm the night before, and said he was safe,' the family friend said.

Mr Munadi's parents had made the dangerous trip to Kunduz from Kabul to await their son's release, the source said, on condition he not be identified.

'They had to collect the body themselves, there was no one to help them, and take it back for burial,' the friend said.

'He was just left there and the body was in a terrible state - shot in the front and in the back, so it is impossible to know if he was killed by the soldiers or by the Taliban.'

Mr Munadi was a senior reporter and manager with Afghan state radio before going to Germany for graduate studies in journalism.

He had returned to Kabul on a summer break from his studies to spend time with his wife and children.

He was buried not far from his family home in Kabul yesterday.

A British soldier and two Afghan civilians were also killed during the raid.