US general pledges investigation on Afghan air strike casualties

US general pledges investigation on Afghan air strike casualties

US general pledges investigation on Afghan air strike casualties

The Department of Defense has identified a soldier from Western Pennsylvania as one of two Green Berets who died in Afghanistan Nov. 3. Gen. Qasim Jangalbagh, the provincial police chief, said the 26 civilians who were killed included members of insurgents' families.

However, Afghan military officials see US air power as a vital support in the fight against the Taliban while the country's own nascent air force is still being built, and the number of air strikes has spiked sharply this year. Their wartime mission is to develop indigenous forces to fight alongside their US counterparts.

Officers say although women receive training separately at the base on the outskirts of capital Kabul, they receive similar training.

US general pledges investigation on Afghan air strike casualties
US general pledges investigation on Afghan air strike casualties

Afghan officials said 33 civilians, including 17 children, appeared to have been killed.

Jamaluddin said both government and Afghan fighters enter the village often. The province is also strategically important for the Taliban as the main source of the country's opium output, worth an estimated 4 billion U.S. dollars (£3.2 billion) a year, much of which funds the insurgency.

U.S. Brig. Gen. Charles Cleveland, briefing journalists in Brussels during a teleconference, said three Afghan troops were killed in the assault.

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United States forces conceded on Saturday that its air strikes "very likely" resulted in civilian casualties in Afghanistan's volatile Kunduz province, pledging a full investigation into the incident which triggered angry protests. They briefly overran the city last September, holding it for three days before a three-week counterattack drove them out.

Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri, while addressing the same news conference, said the joint raid targeted senior Taliban leaders while they were conducting a war meeting.

A service member that graduated from Thiel College was killed, along with one other soldier, while fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan's Kunduz province.

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Byers had more than eight years of service in the Army.

The fight in Afghanistan - American's longest war - began after the September 11, 2001 attacks as the Taliban harbored al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

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