US airstrike accidentally kills 16 police officers


A US airstrike has killed 16 police officers in Afghanistan, officials confirmed on Saturday.

The incident took place in Helmand province on Friday as Afghan security forces attempted to clear a village of Taliban militants, Salam Afghan, a police spokesman, told AFP.

“In the strike, 16 Afghan policemen were killed including two commanders. Two other policemen were wounded,” he said.

The strike hit a compound in Gereshk district in Helmand, large parts of which are under Taliban control.

The Pentagon confirmed the air strike on the Security Forces compound happened during a US-supported operation against Taliban insurgents in the area, and offered its condolences to the families of the security forces who were killed.

A US-supported (Afghan security) operation… resulted in the deaths of… friendly Afghan forces who were gathered in a compound,” Nato’s mission in Afghanistan said in a statement.

“We would like to express our deepest condolences to the families affected by this unfortunate incident,” the statement said, adding there would be a probe into what happened.

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