Taliban condemn deadly US drone strike, stress international support

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

The Taliban have denounced the recent drone strike by the US military that killed 10 Afghan civilians, including seven children in Kabul, saying the attack constituted a "violation of human rights.” 

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid made the remarks on Sunday, while speaking to China Media Group, some three weeks after the United States conducted a drone strike in the vicinity of the Kabul International Airport allegedly targeting a potential planner with the Daesh terrorist group.

"This is not the only incident that the US has committed. It's 20 years that they have martyred civilians in Afghanistan," he said, calling on the United States to take responsibility for its past "killings and oppression" in the country.

"The US must be held accountable for their past actions and cooperate with the people of Afghanistan as a form of compensation for the killings and oppression in the country," he added.

Mujahid, who also serves as Deputy Minister of Culture and Information of the new interim government in Afghanistan, further said such careless acts by the United States lead to a humanitarian catastrophe.

The Taliban spokesman reiterated the call for international donors to restart aid to Afghanistan while expressing optimism for the extension of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) for another six months which was adopted on Friday.

A horrifying mistake

On August 29, the US carried out a “preemptive” drone strike against what it claimed to be a vehicle belonging to a Daesh-K terrorist who posed an imminent threat to American troops at the Kabul airport.

The attack took place a day after the US Embassy in Afghanistan warned of a “specific and credible” threat near Kabul airport.

Later, it was revealed that the drone strike had killed ten members of an Afghan family, including seven children.

The Pentagon kept insisting for over two weeks that the strike was warranted and necessary to prevent an attack on American troops in the wake of a bombing at the Kabul airport that killed 13 US occupation forces and as many as 170 Afghan civilians.

However, on Saturday, the US admitted to killing 10 Afghan civilians despite its previous claims that those killed were terrorists.

General Kenneth McKenzie, the head of US Central Command, claimed full responsibility for what he said was a "mistake" and offered an apology.

The US general said Washington was studying how payments for damages could be made to the families of those killed.

McKenzie said the drone strike that was launched in the chaotic hours after the deadly bombing near the Kabul airport, had been meant to prevent another attack on US troops.

In the days since, he said, Washington has determined that "it is unlikely that...those who died were associated with" Daesh K, an affiliate of the notorious Daesh terrorist organization.

The US-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 removed the Taliban from power, but it worsened the security situation in the country. Two decades later, the Taliban have returned to power again.


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