Family of Afghans killed by US drone say US has not offered compensation

  • Ten members of the Ahmadi family were killed in a misguided U.S. drone strike on August 29.
  • General Kenneth McKenzie said on September 17 that the United States would help the family.
  • But they told CNN that they have not had contact for repairs and that they are struggling.

The family of 10 Afghans killed by mistake in a US drone strike last month said the United States had not offered them any compensation, CNN reported.

Ten people, including seven children, died after a US drone hit a compound near Kabul on August 29.

The Pentagon believed it had found an ISIS-K militant preparing for a terrorist attack, but it had in fact hit Zemari Ahmadi, an aid worker, and his family.

Ahmadi had been spotted putting boxes in his car, which the U.S. military believed were loaded with explosives. Footage obtained by The New York Times showed that Ahmadi was actually loading the car with water containers for his family.

At the time, General Mark Milley, chief of staff, referred to the attack as a “fair strike,” but after The Times’ investigation, the U.S. military admitted on September 17 that it had made a mistake.

It took the U.S. weeks to acknowledge that the attack had killed civilians, but General Kenneth F. McKenzie, chief of the U.S. Central Command, said Sept. 17 that the military found the victims were civilians in about four or five hours.

General Kenneth McKenzie

General Kenneth F. McKenzie.

Caroline Brehman / Getty Images


In his statement, McKenzie said the Pentagon would get in touch with the family to offer compensation payments. “I give my deepest sympathy to the family and friends of those who were killed,” he said.

But members of the Ahmadi family told CNN in an article published Thursday that they had no contact from the United States and that they were struggling to pay for basic supplies such as food, clothing and housing.

“[The US] just showed the world that they apologized to us and fulfilled their responsibilities, “Zamarai Ahmadi’s sister Rohina told CNN.

“But they do not know what my family is going through, what we were and what we are now.”

A photo of Zamarai Ahmadi's sister Rohina shown on cnn to discuss US drone strke

Zamarai Ahmadi’s sister Rohina has spoken to CNN.

CNN


“A house full of life was turned into a cemetery,” she said.

The Department of Defense did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

The Ahmadi family applied for US visas before the strike, CNN reported.

As part of an investigation into the strike, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday that the defense and state departments would work to help the Ahmadi family.

“If they want to leave, then we will definitely do everything we can to facilitate them,” he said.

The family is currently receiving help for their rent from nonprofit Nutrition and Education International, where Zamarai Ahmadi used to work, CNN said.

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