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ISAF and USFOR-A commit to thorough investigation of Afghan casualties


KABUL, Afghanistan (May 11, 2012) — The International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces Afghanistan join President Karzai in extending our deepest regrets and sympathies to the families and loved ones of those who died or were injured during coalition airstrikes on May 4 in PanKalay and May 6 in Nowbar villages.

Unfortunately, the preliminary investigations into these events have determined that our actions resulted in a number of deaths and injuries to Afghan civilians. The coalition takes full responsibility for these tragic and regrettable incidents, and we will meet with the family members of those who died or were injured to express our sincere condolences.

The results of these initial investigations will be briefed to President Karzai by Gen. John R. Allen, commander, International Security Assistance Force, and the president will be assured of our commitment to take any and all appropriate actions to minimize the likelihood of similar occurrences in the future. If our investigation finds someone responsible, the appropriate action will be taken to hold them accountable. As Gen. Allen recently told President Karzai, “I remain committed to eliminating civilian casualties. It is my highest priority.” We endeavor to fight with great discipline and tactical patience, judiciously applying a suitable level of force only when it is necessary and ensuring our response is proportionate to the threat we face.

Finally, we extend our appreciation to the Afghan people for their cooperation and assistance during our investigations into these regrettable incidents. We must not allow these incidents to damage our shared goals of a peaceful and secure Afghanistan. We have accomplished much together over the past ten years. We, as partners with the Afghan government, look forward to continuing this momentum.