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US-led airstrike kills 20 in Afghanistan

A fresh US-led airstrike has killed at least 20 people and wounded several others in the troubled southern regions of Afghanistan, NATO says.

The US-led military alliance says the airstrike took place in a district of Kandahar Province, near the border with Pakistan.

NATO issued a statement, saying that the Friday airstrike targeted a group of Taliban militants in Spin Boldak district, considered a Taliban-linked militant stronghold.

The incident comes as the US and its allies step up a bombing campaign in southern Afghanistan.

Afghan officials have repeatedly asked US-led forces to end the imprecise aerial bombardments that mostly inflict civilian casualties. US-led forces, however, maintain that they are targeting militants.

US-led foreign forces in Afghanistan are currently continuing with their massive military operation in Kandahar.

Witnesses told Press TV that NATO forces have dropped more bombs on villages they think Taliban militants are hiding in, inflicting extensive damage to civilian properties.

The Western military alliance says it is experimenting with a new powerful bomb during the operation.

British General Nick Carter told AFP that it would take until June to know if the offensive was making genuine progress.

US-led troops and Afghan forces say they have pushed Taliban militants back to mountainous areas.

More than one-hundred thousand Afghans have been killed since the US-led invasion of the country in 2001.

The loss of civilian lives at the hand of foreign forces has led to a dramatic increase in anti-American sentiments in Afghanistan.

US-led forces have stepped up attacks in Afghanistan under Washington’s new war strategy, which aims to reduce its military presence next year.

There are more than 150,000 US-led foreign forces in Afghanistan.

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