US Says it Will Pay the Family of the 10 Afghans Killed in a Failed Drone Strike and Help Them Relocate to US

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Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby briefs reporters from the Pentagon Press Briefing Room, Washington, D.C., Oct. 12, 2021. (DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando)

The U.S. offered payments this week to the family of the 10 Afghan civilians, including seven children, who were killed in error by a U.S. drone strike on August 29.

The Pentagon announced the payments in a statement on Friday night but did not say how much was offered, The New York Times reported. The statement also said the U.S. would help the surviving family members relocate to the United States if they are interested.

Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby told The Associated Press the offers were made Thursday during a meeting with the aid organization that employed Zemari Ahmadi, the driver who the Pentagon mistakenly believed was an ISIS-K member and whose car was struck by the drone.

"Dr. Kahl reiterated Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin's commitment to the families, including offering ex gratia condolence payments," Kirby told AP.

The U.S. military believed Ahmadi was an ISIS-K militant filling his car with boxes of explosives, but he was actually loading water containers, footage obtained by The Times showed. U.S. Gen. Mark Milley, head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, initially called the attack a "righteous strike."

Weeks later, the U.S. acknowledged that the strike had killed civilians, including Ahmadi and his family. But Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of of U.S. Central Command, said that the military learned the casualties were civilians within hours of the strike.

Read the original article on Business Insider.

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