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Karzai reacts at alleged civilian deaths in United States airstrike

13 August 2017

"On Thursday afternoon, the US forces bombarded a civilian private vehicle. when they were travelling inside the district", Saaz Wali Shinwari, the district governor of Haska Mina in Nangarhar province, told AFP.

Hajji Saz Wali, the governor of Haska Meena, said the victims included women and children.

Friends and family pray during a funeral procession for victims of a US airstrike in the Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan, Aug. 8, 2017.

"The militants were observed loading weapons into a vehicle and were under surveillance until the vehicle was destroyed by an air strike", Bob Purtiman, a spokesman for the USA military in Afghanistan, told Reuters.

He also ruled out the possibility of any collateral damage, saying the strike was conducted in the middle of open terrain and there was "zero chance" of civilian casualties.

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Afghan officials said Friday that US warplanes killed 16 civilians trying to flee an area in eastern Afghanistan controlled by Islamic State militants. They have been regularly targeting Islamic State insurgents who control several districts in restive Nangarhar.

The former Afghan President Hamid Karzai reacted at the alleged civilian deaths in an airstrike of the U.S. forces in Afghanistan. "On Thursday afternoon, the American forces bombarded a civilian private vehicle... when they were travelling inside the district", he told AFP.

But United States Forces in Afghanistan said in a statement the air strike "killed a number of militants". It was the second time since July 24 that an airstrike in that district killed civilians, according to Afghan officials.

US forces in Afghanistan on Friday denied allegations by Afghan officials that a USA airstrike killed 16 civilians in eastern Afghanistan. Civilian deaths are at an all-time high in Afghanistan.

Karzai reacts at alleged civilian deaths in United States airstrike