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Afghanistan: Pentagon questioned about civilian casualties from drone strike

The Guardian’s world affairs editor, Julian Borger, is monitoring the latest updates on Afghanistan.

Responding to repeated questions about civilian casualties from a drone strike on Kabul on Sunday, the Pentagon spokesman, John Kirby said: “We are not in a position to dispute it right now, and … we’re assessing, and we’re investigating.”

The Pentagon insists that the target was an Islamic State car bomb heading for the airport, but reports from Kabul say there were many civilian casualties, including at least six children.

Kirby said that the strike would be thoroughly scrutinised, but added decisions about such strikes had to be made very quickly because of the nature of suicide attacks carried out by IS.

“We have to try to be as quick and as nimble as [IS] are. ..We believed this to be an imminent threat,” Kirby said. “We took the action that we believed was the most necessary at the best opportunity to thwart that attack.”

Uncertainty for US schools amid Delta variant threat

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