No U.S. soldiers to face charges for Pakistan strike: report

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, March 25, 2012 1:09 EDT
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The US military has decided that no service members will face disciplinary charges for a NATO airstrike in November that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers, according to The New York Times.

A Pentagon investigation found late last year that both US and Pakistani troops were responsible for the exchange of fire.

But it noted that the Pakistanis had fired first from two border posts not on coalition maps, and that they kept firing even after the Americans tried to warn them that they were shooting at allied troops.

Pakistan rejected these conclusions.

The US military launched a second inquiry to determine whether any American military personnel should be punished.

This recently completed review had come up with a negative conclusion, the Times reported, citing three unnamed military officials.

Officials said the Americans fired in self-defense, the report said, and any other mistakes had been the result of battlefield confusion.

“We found nothing criminally negligent on the part of any individual in our investigations of the incident,” The Times quoted one senior US military official as saying.

Pakistani-US relations plummeted after the killing of Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden in a military operation carried out inside Pakistan but without Islamabad’s knowledge.

It was seen as a humiliation for the nation’s rulers.

Relations suffered further after 24 Pakistani soldiers were killed in the November clash.

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP journalists cover wars, conflicts, politics, science, health, the environment, technology, fashion, entertainment, the offbeat, sports and a whole lot more in text, photographs, video, graphics and online.
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