afghanistan, drone strike

Pentagon says Afghanistan drone strike that killed 10 was an honest mistake

Image Source : AP

Lt Gen Said said there had been “execution errors, combined with confirmation bias and communications breakdowns” that led to “regrettable civilian casualties”.

A US drone strike that killed 10 Afghan civilians was an error that did not violate any laws, a Pentagon inspector said following an investigation, the BBC reported.

“It was an honest mistake,” US Air Force Inspector Lieutenant General Sami Said told reporters. The strike on August 29 killed three adults, including a man who worked for a US aid group, and seven children.

It took place as Western nations attempted to evacuate Afghans after the Taliban took control of the country, the BBC report said. Lt Gen Said said there had been “execution errors, combined with confirmation bias and communications breakdowns” that led to “regrettable civilian casualties”.

But he said an investigation had found “no violation of law, including the Law of War”. “It’s not criminal conduct, random conduct, negligence,” he added.

He said the US personnel who carried out the drone strike genuinely believed they were targeting “an imminent threat” from the Islamic State (IS) terror group to US forces and diplomatic staff at Kabul airport, the report added.

It came days after IS-K, the group’s Afghanistan branch, said they were behind a bomb attack outside Kabul airport, where thousands of Afghans had gathered to try to flee the country, killing at least 170 people including 13 US service personnel.

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