An August 29 airstrike in Kabul targeting a car believed to be carrying Daesh suicide bombers killed 10 civilians, Pentagon officials told reporters on Friday.
The US Central Command chief Gen. Kenneth McKenzie said among those 10 civilians, seven were children.
“As the combatant commander, I am fully responsible for this strike and its tragic outcome,” McKenzie told reporters.
According to McKenzie, it was believed that the target was militants trying to attack US forces and the evacuees at Kabul airport. “This strike was taken in the earnest belief that it would prevent an imminent threat to our forces and the evacuees at the airport, but it was a mistake,” McKenzie said.
On August 29, the US airstrike targeted a car inside a house's yard in Kabul’s PD15.
At the time, the Pentagon claimed it had killed multiple Daesh suicide bombers who were planning to carry out an attack on the Kabul airport where US soldiers were facilitating the evacuation. The airstrike happened days after Daesh suicide bombers attacked Kabul airport and killed around 170 people.
The relatives of the victims at the time told TOLOnews that the airstrike had targeted a car full of civilians.
“If I were with them, I would also have been killed. My brother was a good man, he was like a father to us,” said Ajmal, a relative of the victims.
“They have created a horrifying incident. Children were killed, they were burned. Bodies were slain. Our neighbors came and extinguished the car fire,” said Aimal, the father of a victim.
“The incident happened when the father left the car while the children were inside,” said Gharibullah, a relative of the victims.
Officials from the caretaker cabinet also told TOLOnews that the victims were civilians.
Najibullah, a relative of the victims, called the attack a crime against humanity. “This incident is a crime against humanity. If there are human rights, if there is an investigation, they should secure justice. We are neither Taliban nor Daesh or former employees of the government,” he said.