Afghan Airstrikes Kill 20 Civilians, Mostly Children, in Eastern Raid

Abdullah says civilian casualties are unacceptable

A Friday air raid against Taliban forces in Kunar Province, Eastern Afghanistan has killed at least 20 civilians, according to Afghan officials. They say eight women and 12 children were killed, and over 15 more civilians were wounded in the attacks.

Reports of the civilian casualties came out after awhile, though initially Kunar officials reported 38 people killed, all of them Taliban or al-Qaeda members. The subsequent reports are that the civilians were in the same area.

The civilian casualties were quickly criticized by Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, who said that the security forces need to take more measures to prevent civilian casualties during major operations like this.

There have been multiple incidents in recent weeks where Afghan airstrikes were blamed for civilian casualties. Abdullah warned that negligence was not justifiable, and pushed for legal action to reduce deaths in the future.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.