Uruzgan helicopter attack

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Uruzgan helicopter attack
DateFebruary 21, 2010
Result 27–33 civilians killed, including over twenty men, four women and one child; another 12 wounded

Uruzgan helicopter attack refers to the February 21, 2010, killing of many Afghan civilians, including over twenty men, four women and one child, by United States Army with another 12 civilians wounded.[1][2] The attack took place near the border between Uruzgan and Daykundi province in Afghanistan when special operation troops helicopters attacked three minibuses with "airborne weapons".[3][4]

Summary of events[edit]

The victims were traveling in three buses in broad daylight in a group of 42 civilians in Uruzgan province near the border to Daykundi on February 21, 2010 .[5][6] When the convoy was on a main road in the village of Zerma it came under attack from U.S. Special Forces piloting Little Bird helicopters using "airborne weapons". NATO later stated that they believed at that time that the minibuses were carrying insurgents.[7][8] 27 civilians including four women and one child were killed in the attack while another 12 were wounded. Initially the number of deaths was reported at 33.[9] ISAF ground troops transported the wounded to medical treatment facilities after they found women and children at the scene.[10]



Afghanistan's cabinet called the killings "unjustifiable" and condemned the raid "in the strongest terms possible".[11][12] The local governor and the Interior Minister said that all of the victims were civilians. Amanullah Hotak, head of Uruzgan's provincial council said: "We don't want their apologies or the money they always give after every attack. We want them to kill all of us together instead of doing it to us one by one."[13] Haji Ghullam Rasoul, whose cousins died in the attack, said, "They came here to bring security but they kill our children, they kill our brothers and they kill our people."[14]

United States[edit]

U.S. General Stanley McChrystal said he was "extremely saddened". "I have made it clear to our forces that we are here to protect the Afghan people, and inadvertently killing or injuring civilians undermines their trust and confidence in our mission," he said in a statement. "We will re-double our efforts to regain that trust."[15]


A Dutch Defense Ministry spokesman in The Hague said Dutch forces did not call the airstrike, which took place in an area under Dutch military control.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Afghan Civilians Killed in NATO Airstrike". CBS News. Associated Press. February 22, 2010. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  2. ^ Thomson Reuters Foundation. "Thomson Reuters Foundation". Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  3. ^ Partlow, Joshua; Chandrasekaran, Rajiv (February 23, 2010). "U.S. airstrike kills at least 27 Afghan civilians". The Washington Post. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  4. ^ Matthew Rosenberg (22 February 2010). "U.S. Special Operations Ordered Deadly Afghan Strike". WSJ. Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  5. ^ "wfol.tv". Retrieved 13 March 2015.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ "'Unjustifiable' airstrike kills 27 Afghan civilians". MSNBC. Associated Press. February 22, 2010. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  7. ^ "NATO airstrike kills at least 27 civilians in Afghanistan". Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  8. ^ "27 Afghan civilians killed in NATO airstrike". Trend. 22 February 2010. Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  9. ^ "NATO airstrike kills 27 civilians in Afghanistan". Reuters. Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  10. ^ "NATO airstrike kills 27 Afghan civilians". Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  11. ^ "Civilian Deaths Continue Unabated in Afghanistan". Common Dreams. Archived from the original on 1 July 2013. Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  12. ^ "NATO Afghanistan airstrike kills 27 civilians". Retrieved 30 November 2014.
  13. ^ Boone, Jon; Weaver, Matthew (February 22, 2010). "Afghan ministers voice anger as civilians killed in Nato air strike". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  14. ^ "Login". Retrieved 13 March 2015.
  15. ^ "McChrystal apologizes as airstrike kills dozens in Afghanistan". CNN. February 23, 2010. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  16. ^ Nordland, Rod (February 22, 2010). "NATO Airstrike Kills Afghan Civilians". The New York Times. Retrieved 3 March 2017.

External links[edit]