Nine Afghan soldiers were killed and four others injured by a US airstrike on an Afghan army checkpoint Wednesday in an apparent friendly-fire incident in eastern Afghanistan, according to Afghan and US military officials.
The pre-dawn airstrike occurred after a convoy of coalition troops came under fire as they returned to their base in Khost province, according to a statement released by the U.S. military. Coalition soldiers called for air support after exchanging fire with Afghan troops near an Afghan army checkpoint in the Sayed Kheil area in what military officials said could be “a case of mistaken identity on both sides.”
US military officials did not release the nationalities of the coalition soldiers involved in the incident. But the majority of coalition forces based in eastern Afghanistan are US soldiers.
Arsallah Jamal, governor of Khost province, said coalition and Afghan troops had been engaged in operations in the area for about 10 days before the strike occurred. Jamal said the army checkpoint was relatively new but was well-known and on a main road. “They knew it was there. They made a mistake,” Jamal said.
via Washington Post: US Strike Kills 9 Afghan Troops