At least 18 killed in US airstrikes in E Afghanistan

A US Predator drone

At least 18 people have been killed in two separate US-led airstrikes in the eastern Afghan province of Nangarhar.

Twelve people were killed after a vehicle was attacked in the Bati Kot district on Tuesday.

Local police authorities said six people were also killed in another US-led drone strike in the Haska Mina district.

The officials added that the airstrike targeted Taliban members, including a senior commander.

The US-led forces have recently increased their air raids against civilian areas in Afghanistan.

On Monday, a drone attack in Nangarhar Province left at least four people dead. Five people were also killed and three others wounded in a US drone strike in the northeastern province of Kunar on November 16.

On November 11, at least six people lost their lives when US-led foreign forces carried out a drone strike in the Spin Ghar district of Nangarhar.

The US carries out targeted killings through drone strikes in several Muslim countries, such as Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia. Washington claims the targets of the drone attacks are militants, but local officials and witnesses maintain that civilians have been the main victims of such raids over the past few years.

The United States and its allies invaded Afghanistan in October 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban from power, but insecurity continues to rise across the country, despite the presence of thousands of US-led troops.

The United Nations and several human rights organizations have identified the US as the world’s number-one user of “targeted killings,” largely due to its drone attacks in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

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