NATO Kills Nine Children in Afghan Air Strike

Provincial Police Say Children Were Collecting Firewood

by Jason Ditz, March 01, 2011

Already facing public outrage over the killing of 65 civilians in an offensive, NATO is once again in the hot seat in the Kunar Province, with provincial police reporting that a NATO air strike killed nine children this afternoon.

NATO reported that its Forward Operating Base in the region came under rocket fire, and that it launched the air strikes at what they believed was the “point of origin” of the attack, a nearby mountainside.

The mountainside, however, did not contain insurgents, but rather contained ten Afghan children who were collecting firewood on the wooded area. Nine of them were slain in the strike, while another was badly wounded.

NATO has promised a further investigation into the kilings, which were in the Darah-Ye Pech District. They insisted that they took the reports of civilian deaths “very seriously,” though previous glib responses to the last Kunar massacres prompted major scorn amongst Afghan officials.

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