13 civilians killed in U.S. airstrikes
JALALABAD, Afghanistan – At least 13 civilians, including several children, were killed in American airstrikes in eastern Afghanistan that were carried out in support of an Afghan-led operation against the Taliban, local officials and tribal elders said Sunday.
Members of a CIAsponsored Afghan strike force called in air support after coming under fire Saturday as they mounted an assault on Taliban fighters in the district of Hesarak in Nangarhar province, the officials said.
The airstrikes hit two houses in the village of Naser Khil, said a tribal elder, Ruzi Khan Maruf. In one house, the village’s lone doctor, his wife and their five teenage daughters were killed, Maruf said. In the other, the doctor’s brother, his wife and their four children – three teenage girls and a boy – reportedly died. The brother was an Afghan soldier, Maruf said.
Shah Mahmood Miakhel, the governor of Nangarhar province, said an important Taliban commander had also been killed in the airstrikes.