U.S. will provide condolence payments to families of Kabul drone strike victims

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Afghans inspect damage of the Ahmadi family house after a U.S. drone strike in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 29. The strike, which the Pentagon originally deemed a success in striking an ISIS-K target, killed 10 civilians, none of whom were associated with the terrorist group.

Khwaja Tawfiq Sediqi/AP

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Khwaja Tawfiq Sediqi/AP

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Pentagon Reverses Itself And Now Says A Deadly Kabul Drone Strike Was An Error

Kahl apologized again on behalf of the DOD «for the loss of life» from the strike and reiterated that «Mr. Zemari Ahmadi and others who were killed were innocent victims who bore no blame and were not affiliated with ISIS-K or threats to U.S. forces.»

Kwon said Ahmadi’s had worked with NEI for years, «providing care and lifesaving assistance for people facing high mortality rates in Afghanistan.»

According to Kirby, «Dr. Kahl reiterated Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s commitment to the families, including offering ex gratia condolence payments, in addition to working with the State Department in support of Mr. Ahmadi’s family members who are interested in relocation to the United States.»

It has not been specified how much the condolence payments would be.

With the planned drone strike, U.S. forces were aiming to target ISIS-K members behind the Aug. 26 attack at the Kabul airport that killed more than 150 people, including 13 U.S. military members.

Originally, the Pentagon said the drone strike was a success, even though some civilians had died in the attack. But after reports from The New York Times and Washington Post, the Pentagon reversed course and said the strike was a «tragic mistake.»

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«We now assess that it is unlikely that the vehicle and those who died were associated with ISIS-K, or a direct threat to U.S. forces,» Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, said on Sept. 17.

Ex-gratia condolence payments are not a requirement when there is property damage, personal injury or death caused by U.S. military forces. But they are, in part, used as a method to «maintain friendly relations» in areas where U.S. forces are operating.

  • John Kirby
  • drone strike
  • Kabul
  • Pentagon
  • Department of Defense
  • Afghanistan

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