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Women, Children among 17 Afghans Dead in NATO Wedding Strike – Report

Posted by yourpakistan on June 7, 2012


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Afghan villagers sit on the back of a vehicle carrying dead bodies of children who were killed in a NATO airstrike on a home in Sajawand village in Logar province south of Kabul on June 6, 2012

A NATO airstrike in the eastern Afghan province of Logar has killed 17 people, including women and children, local officials report. A NATO spokesperson said a team had been deployed to investigate the claims of civilian casualties.

Afghan authorities say the pre-dawn attack aimed at militants in the area hit a wedding. An AP photographer at the scene reported seeing the bodies of five women, seven children and six men piled in vans.

AFP news agency released a photo of casualties piled into the back of a vehicle. Local villagers were reportedly driving the bodies to the capital of Logar province to protest the NATO strike which they say hit a house in the district of Baraki Barak. Militants were also killed in the strike according to officials.

NATO says it has received no reports of civilians killed in the pre-dawn operation targeting a Taliban leader. The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) released a statement, confirming a pre-dawn operation aimed at the capture of a Taliban leader in Logar.

“During the operation, insurgents attacked the Afghan and coalition troops with small-arms fire and a grenade,” said the NATO statement. In response, alliance forces “returned fire and requested a precision airstrike.”

Al-Jazeera reports that the airstrike targeted the house of a tribal elder in Baraki Barak, killing him and 16 members of his family. It makes no mention of the strike hitting a wedding, but says that six Taliban fighters who were close by were also killed.

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