The bombing of a hospital in Afghanistan by Coalition Forces was “tragic, inexcusable and possibly even criminal” according to a statement by Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reports that 12 medical staff and 7 patients including 3 children were killed by the strikes, possibly carried out by US aircraft confirmed to be operating in the area. The death toll could yet rise as many of the buildings 200 occupants are still unaccounted for.

MSF state that both the US and Afghan air force were informed of the GPS coordinates of the hospital several times before the airstrikes commenced.

An unnamed MSF official has also stated a call was made to US officials immediately after the first attack, although air strikes continued for a further 50 minutes at approximately 15 minute intervals.

In response, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the incident is “deeply saddening”. A press release by the US Military stated that action in the area “may have resulted in collateral damage to a nearby medical facility”.

Makeshift Operating Theatre in MSF Kunduz Clinice after attack. Courtesy of MSF
Makeshift Operating Theatre in MSF Kunduz Clinice after attack. Courtesy of MSF

President of MSF Meinie Nicolai posted a statement online condemning the attack:

“This attack is abhorrent and a grave violation of International Humanitarian Law, We demand total transparency from Coalition forces. We cannot accept that this horrific loss of life will simply be dismissed as ‘collateral damage’.”

Other humanitarian organisations including the International Committee for the Red Cross have also condemned the attack as a serious breach of international humanitarian law.

 

6 COMMENTS

  1. well now ; doesn’t that just depend upon he has some awareness of communications – when something need be confirmed during an action, the number of too and fro messages, each one taking a time to nail down the questions coming ever quicker and faster. It isn’t so simple as people appear to expect.

  2. The end result is that no one will be held to account, in the same way as the bombings by Israel on Gaza strip. Further the USA is not a member of the International Criminal Court and therefor cannot be brought before the Court in this regard. This is also why they have escaped being held to account for the illegal detention and torture of inmates at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

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