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At Least 30 Die When US Drone Misses ISIS, Hits Farmworkers

American officials confirm strike but not casualties
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 19, 2019 4:36 PM CDT
Injured men receive treatment at a hospital Thursday after a drone attack in Nangarhar, Afghanistan.   (AP Photo/Wali Sabawoon)

(Newser) – A US drone missed its target—an ISIS hideout—and killed at least 30 farmers and laborers sitting around a bonfire in eastern Afghanistan this week. Another 40 people were injured, Reuters reports. The workers were collecting pine nuts in a mountainous region in the eastern part of the country. "The workers had lit a bonfire and were sitting together when a drone targeted them," a tribal elder said. US and Afghan officials confirmed the Wednesday night strike but would give no information on the casualties. Residents of the area protested the US attack as bodies were carried out Thursday morning.

On Thursday, a suicide bombing by the Taliban killed at least 20 people in the south of Afghanistan, per the Guardian. Fighting across the country has killed hundreds of civilians since the US-Taliban peace talks were called off earlier this month. In the first half of the year, the UN says, almost 4,000 civilians were killed or wounded in Afghanistan. The US has about 14,000 troops there. (Read more Afghanistan casualties stories.)

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