- Last month, a US airstrike killed an aid worker and nine members of his family.
- Surviving members of the family are asking for help leaving Afghanistan, The Washington Post reported.
- News coverage revealed the family’s ties to US companies and they fear retaliation from the Taliban.
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Surviving members of the family that lost ten relatives from the US airstrike in Kabul last month are worried for their safety after reports showed some of them had worked for US-based firms, The Washington Post reported.
Members of the Ahmadi family told the Post they don’t hold any animosity but they don’t necessarily forgive the US for miscalculating the strike that killed aid worker, Zemari Ahmadi, and nine other relatives, including seven children.
Family members told the outlets they want compensation and help leaving Afghanistan and being resettled in another safe country, possibly the US.
“You can see the situation in Afghanistan is not good,” Samim Ahmadi, 24, Zemari’s stepson, told the Post. “Whether in America or another country, we want peace and comfort for our remaining years.”
On August 26, a suicide bombing by the extremist group ISIS-K at the Kabul international airport killed more than 160 people and 13 US soldiers. On August 29th, the US retaliated.
The US Military at the time said the strike was carried out by an unmanned drone on a car “eliminating an imminent ISIS-K threat to Hamad Karzai International airport.”
The US Central Command said they were certain they hit their intended target and there were no casualties. Later that same day, in a subsequent statement, the military said it was “aware of reports of civilian casualties,”
On Friday, the military apologized and acknowledged that the intelligence was wrong.
“This strike was taken in the earnest belief that it would prevent an imminent threat to our forces and the evacuees at the airport, but it was a mistake and I offer my sincere apology,” Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, the head of US Central Command, told reporters.
Zamarai’s brother, Emal Ahmadi, told the Post, the family is happy the US “acknowledged their mistake and confirmed that they killed innocent people.”
Emal and Zamarai have both worked for American companies and had applications in process for special visas before the airstrike. Members are worried that these reports could make them targets for the Taliban.
“We are worried,” Ajmal Ahmadi, another brother, told the Post. “We feel under threat because we are so exposed to the public by the media. Everyone got to know that we have worked for foreigners, served in the Afghan army as well as the Afghan intelligence agency.”
The family said they haven’t had any contact with any US officials following the airstrike, but they want the US to hold those responsible for the attack accountable.
“They knew and saw there were children on the ground. Can anyone bring them back?” Emal told the Post.