A NATO airstrike this weekend killed eight or more civilians, which included four children and three women in Afghanistan, officials alleged yesterday. According to the CS Monitor this Monday, Sept. 9, NATO is claiming that only 10 Taliban fighters actually died in the encounter, which occurred just after 5 p.m. on Saturday evening.
The NATO airstrike that killed a minimum of eight civilians and 10 Taliban fighters seems to point to the growing tensions between President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistant and his dubbed backers from around the world. In the presidential statement this Sunday, Karzai’s Afghan office also slammed the U.S. diplomat for the region, James Dobbins, after the official called the airstrike a result of a “civil war issue.”
"President Hamid Karzai termed the attack on women and children against all internationally agreed principles and strongly condemned it," said the leaders in the statement.
Numerous civilian deaths have continued to be reported as evidence of the strain between Afghanistan President Karzai and reactionary retribution from his international backers. Karzai, on his part, has not allowed Afghan troops to call for any foreign airstrikes — although the banning fails to always be followed by personnel — while NATO still encourages its officers not to bomb or fire at any civilian-populated locales.
The NATO airstrike at hand was alleged to be aiming for insurgents in Kunar, a border province that is often considered a meeting site for numerous foreign insurgents, some of whom are believed to be members of the terrorist organization, al Qaeda.
"We can confirm that we undertook a precision strike in ... Kunar, and are able to confirm 10 enemy forces killed," said a spokeswoman for the NATO-led force in Afghanistan. She added that NATO had heard of no 8 civilian deaths or casualties, including the possible deaths of 10 Taliban members.
Investigations are now being launched regarding the situation in Afghanistan, and how a response (if any) will be made by the government.