US coalition forces admit Afghan civilian deaths
Sat, May 12 2012 01:59 | 753 Views
Kabul (ANTARA News/AFP) - NATO and US forces in Afghanistan admitted Friday that a number of civilians were killed in two separate airstrikes, days after President Hamid Karzai warned that such deaths threatened relations with the US.
A joint statement by NATO`s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and US forces gave no details of how many civilians died in each incident, but local officials have put the total at more than 20.
"The coalition takes full responsibility for these tragic and regrettable incidents, and we will meet with the family members of those who died or were injured to express our sincere condolences," the statement said.
ISAF commander General John Allen will brief Karzai on the results of initial investigations into the incidents on May 4 in southern Helmand province and on May 6 in northwestern Badghis province.
"The president will be assured of our commitment to take any and all appropriate actions to minimise the likelihood of similar occurrences in the future," the statement said.
"If our investigation finds someone responsible, appropriate action will be taken to hold them accountable."
On Sunday, Karzai summoned Allen and US ambassador Ryan Crocker to warn that civilian deaths caused by international forces fighting a Taliban insurgency threatened the strategic pact he signed with US President Barack Obama last week. (*)
Editor: B Kunto Wibisono
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