At least 30 civilians killed in air strike in eastern Afghanistan: government officials

Attack aimed at destroying IS hideout accidentally targets farmers

Reuters September 19, 2019
Afghan security forces stand at the site of a car bomb attack in Qalat, capital of Zabul province, Afghanistan September 19, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

KABUL: At least 30 civilians were killed and 40 injured in an air strike conducted by Afghan security forces, backed by US air support, in eastern Afghanistan, officials said on Thursday.

The attack on Wednesday night was aimed at destroying a hideout used by Islamic State militants, but it accidentally targeted farmers near a field, three government officials told Reuters.

Sohrab Qaderi, a provincial council member in eastern Nangarhar province, said a drone strike killed 30 workers in a pine nut field and at least 40 others were injured.

The defence ministry in Kabul confirmed the strike, but refused to share casualty details immediately.

US forces were not immediately available for a comment.

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