The US announced that it will offer condolence payments to relatives of the 10 people who were killed in a drone strike in Kabul, Afghanistan, in August. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, in a statement on Friday, said that the Defence Department was working with the State Department to help surviving family members relocate to the United States.
After Islamic State (Khorasan) insurgents killed 13 US service members and over 169 Afghans in a suicide bomb strike in Kabul airport in August, US President Joe Biden had promised to hunt down the perpetrators of the act. Hours later, the US military stated that that it had carried out a drone strike in Afghanistan, killing two high-profile "planners and facilitators" of the Islamic State—Biden added that he was "not done with them yet".
However, discrepancies between the military's portrayal of the strike and findings on the ground quickly emerged. The Associated Press and other news organisations reported that the driver of the targeted vehicle was a longtime employee at a US humanitarian organisation. There were no signs of a large secondary blast, despite the Pentagon's assertion that the vehicle contained explosives.
A few weeks later, General Frank McKenzie, the commander of the US Central Command, conceded that those killed in the drone srikes were "unlikely to be associated with ISIS-K or were a direct threat to US forces". "However, the strike must be considered in the context of the on-ground situation at the Hamid Karzai International Airport. Also, a substantial body of intelligence had indicated the imminence of another attack," he said. As per data provided, 10 civilians, including up to seven children, were killed.
-Inputs from agencies