Protests erupted in the Paktia Province of Afghanistan today after an overnight NATO airstrike killed seven civilians, including a nine-year-old child. Deputy Governor Abdul Walisahl confirmed the incident.
The provincial government has announced a thorough investigation, and says that the slain were gathering firewood on a mountainside for the approaching winter at the time of the attack.
NATO, as usual, dismissed the allegations as untrue, but offered no explanation for the seven civilian bodies obviously killed in airstrikes. They insisted the attack on the mountainside killed eight “enemy combatants.”
As the first major civilian killings since the inauguration, there has been a conspicuous lack of comment from President Ashraf Ghani. His predecessor, Hamid Karzai, regularly condemned such killings, despite the fact that such criticism made him unpopular with NATO.
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