Afghan Military Airstrikes plays havoc upon civilians including women and children

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Afghan Military Airstrikes plays havoc upon civilians including women and children

KABUL: The Afghan air force conducted multiple strikes on Taliban positions on Saturday that killed more than 30 insurgent fighters, officials said, as President Ashraf Ghani once again called for a ceasefire.

The Taliban claimed the strike had killed nearly two dozen civilians including women and children in the latest mass-casualty incident in Afghanistan that came even as peace talks were under way in Qatar.

“This morning, Taliban fighters attacked (Afghan army) positions in ... Khanabad district in Kunduz province,” the Defence Ministry said in a statement on Twitter.

The military “intercepted the attack in accordance with ‘active defense’ procedures,” the statement added, noting that more than 30 Taliban fighters including two commanders were killed.

In a statement, the Taliban denied its fighters were hit and said 23 civilians had been killed. The defence ministry said it was aware of the claim and would investigate.

Local hospital director Mohammad Naeem Mangal said that three dead and three wounded civilians had been brought to the facility.