Great Satan US-led strike kills 17 policemen in south Afghanistan
More than a dozen counter-narcotics police officers were killed when a military aircraft operated by US-led forces in Afghanistan carried out an operation in the country’s troubled southern province of Helmand.
Provincial police chief, Major General Nabi Jan Mullahkhel, said on Monday that the airstrike took place in southeast of the provincial district of Khanashin, also known as Reg, the night before, leaving 17 policemen dead.
He added that an investigation team had been dispatched to the area to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident.
Provincial governor spokesman Omar Zwak also said the aerial assault came as Afghan forces were conducting an operation that was meant to arrest drug smugglers in the area.
There are reports that four other officers from the counter-narcotics team were wounded in the strike.
Afghan poppy fields covered some 224,000 hectares (553,500 acres) in 2014 — a seven-percent rise from the 209,000 hectares the previous year, according to a new study by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
The UNODC noted in its annual World Drugs report released on June 26 that Afghanistan accounted for 85 percent of the global opium production, which stood at 7,554 tons in 2014.
Afghanistan is still gripped by insecurity nearly 14 years after the United States and its allies attacked the country in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. Although the attack overthrew the Taliban, many areas across Afghanistan still face violence and insecurity.