Death toll rises: 9 MSF workers killed in suspected US airstrike in Afghanistan – CNN
The MSF hospital was hit multiple times
U.S. says it carried out strikes in the area that may have caused “collateral damage”
More than 100 patients and 80 MSF staff were present when the bombs fell
The number of Doctors Without Borders staff killed in the bombing of a hospital in Kunduz city, Afghanistan, has risen to nine, the aid organization said.
[Previous story, posted at 4:45 a.m. ET]
(CNN) — Airstrikes killed three staff workers of medical aid group Doctors Without Borders early Saturday in the Afghan city of Kunduz, the charity said. U.S. forces said they conducted airstrikes in the area.
At least 37 people were injured, including 24 of the medical aid organization’s staff, the Afghan public health ministry tweeted.
Thirty people are unaccounted for, the aid organization said.
U.S. forces carried out a nearby strike early Saturday “against individuals threatening the force,” Army spokesman Col. Brian Tribus said.
The strike “may have resulted in collateral damage to a nearby medical facility,” he said in a statement. The military is investigating.
“We do not yet have the final casualty figures, but our medical teams are providing first aid and treating the injured patients and MSF personnel,” said Bart Janssens, operations director for the organization also known as Medecins Sans Frontieres.
When the aerial attack occurred, 105 patients and their caretakers were in the hospital. More than 80 MSF international and national staff were present.
Mourning and condemnation
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul expressed condolences in a statement on its Facebook page.
“The U.S. Embassy mourns for the individuals and families affected by the tragic incident at the Doctors without Borders hospital, and for all those suffering from the violence in Kunduz,” it read. The embassy praised the group’s work as “heroic.”
The International Committee of the Red Cross condemned the bombing of the hospital.
“Such attacks against health workers and facilities undermine the capacity of humanitarian organizations to assist the Afghan people at a time when they most urgently need it,” said Jean-Nicolas Marti, Head of the ICRC delegation in Afghanistan.
Taliban take Kunduz
Earlier in the week, MSF hospital was caught in the crossfire between the Taliban and Afghan security forces who were supported by U.S. troops. The battle encroached on the hospital’s gate.
Bullets broke windows and punctured the roof of the intensive care unit.
The Taliban captured Kunduz city earlier this week …Read More