3 killed in US airstrike on hospital in Afghanistan’s Kunduz
An aerial assault, possibly carried out by US forces, has hit a Doctors Without Borders hospital in northern Afghanistan, killing three staff members of the humanitarian organization.
In a statement on Saturday, the charity group, known by its French acronym MSF, said its trauma center in the northern embattled city of Kunduz was bombed several times and “badly damaged.”
The MSF statement said three people were confirmed dead in the incident, while the fate of 30 others is still in question, adding, “The medical team is working around the clock to do everything possible for the safety of patients and hospital staff.”
Meanwhile, the US-led NATO military alliance said American forces may have conducted the airstrike.
“US forces conducted an airstrike in Kunduz city at 2:15 a.m. (local time)… against individuals threatening the force. The strike may have resulted in collateral damage to a nearby medical facility. This incident is under investigation,” a NATO statement said.
Conflicting reports on Kunduz
Kunduz has been the scene of heavy clashes between Afghan government forces and Taliban militants, who seized the city late last month.
The Afghan officials said Thursday that they have managed to wrest back control of Kunduz from Taliban militants, but local sources says the city is not fully liberated.
Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, has said that militants were holding their ground in the volatile city. However, some Taliban sources have admitted that the militants were conducting a retreat from Kunduz.
The attacked MSF center, a key medical lifeline in the region, is said to have been running “beyond capacity” in recent days of fighting.