AFGHANISTANWORLD

No punishment for U.S. troops involved in deadly Kabul strike: Pentagon

The Pentagon said on Monday that no U.S. military personnel would be held accountable for an August drone strike in Kabul that killed 10 civilians, including seven children.

An earlier investigation by the Air Force inspector general said the Aug. 29 strike was caused by execution errors, interpreting information that supported certain viewpoints, and communication breakdowns. The military previously called the strike a “tragic mistake.”

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told reporters that senior commanders had made a number of recommendations to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin about the incident, none of which included any accountability measures for specific personnel.

Austin accepted the recommendations, Kirby said.
“If the Secretary (of defense) believed that in the case of the 29 August airstrike, that accountability was, was warranted and needed, he would certainly support those kinds of efforts.” he added.

Kirby noted the high level of the threat facing U.S. forces following a deadly bombing outside the Kabul airport that killed 13 troops, context that he said was important.

“What we saw here was a breakdown in process and execution and procedural events, not the result of negligence, not the result of misconduct, not the result of poor leadership,” Kirby said.

While the Pentagon has said it is working to offer condolence payments and relocation to the family of Afghans killed in the strike, it is still in talks with an aid organization that employed one of the victims, Reuters reported.

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