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NATO: Nuristan Air Raid Did Not Kill Afghan Worker


NATO Says Air Raid in Nuristan Province Did Not Kill Afghan Workers

NATO says its has evidence that shows an airstrike against a Taliban leader in northeastern Nuristan province was successful and did not result in the deaths of 14 Afghan construction workers.

In a statement Thursday, Brigadier General Carlos Branco said Afghan and NATO forces tracked the movements of Abdullah Jan, a key Taliban leader in Nuristan and five of his followers, from a cave complex to a tent Monday night. Branco said the tent was hit by a precision air strike.

He also said a NATO investigation shows there was also no construction equipment or materials at the site, and nothing indicating the presence of any construction workers.

NATO and the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan have been sharply criticized for killing civilians during their military operations against insurgents. NATO has said it is doing all it can to prevent civilian casualties - and has blamed Taliban militants for using local people as human shields.

Also Thursday, police said Afghan and international forces attacked Taliban insurgents in the country's restive south overnight, killing about 30 fighters.

A provincial police chief, Sayed Aqa Saqib, says 12 other insurgents were captured in the operation in Kandahar province.

ENDS

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