NATO warplanes attacked the village in the Zhari District of Kandahar today, killing at least seven civilians, including six children, and injuring two other children. The attack came after a gunbattle outside the village between NATO and Taliban forces.
NATO officials termed the killings “unfortunate” and said they came “in response to insurgent action.” They have promised to launch an inquiry into why the children were bombed.
Reports say that after the gunbattle some of the Taliban were fleeing on the road which goes through the village. NATO bombed the road, and children who were playing alongside it were slain. Most of the insurgents appear to have gotten away, though some unconfirmed reports say one of the bombs hit and killed two of them.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned the attack, saying that he was launching his own investigation into the matter. Last week’s Loya Jirga, which was supposed to affirm a continued US occupation of Afghanistan through 2024, had expressed serious concern about civilian casualties, and predicated their acceptance on NATO curbing the killings.