AP NEWS

The Latest: Anti-Taliban raid kills at least 40 civilians

September 23, 2019 GMT

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Latest on a deadly raid and airstrike in southern Afghanistan (all times local):

4:55 p.m.

An Afghan official says that at least 40 civilians have been killed during an Afghan special forces raid and airstrikes conducted against of Taliban in southern Helmand province.

Abdul Majed Akhand, deputy provincial councilman, says that the majority of the dead are women and children who were at a wedding ceremony in Musa Qala district.

Akhund said that 12 other civilians were wounded and are in the hospital in Lashkar Gah, the capital of the province.

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12:30 p.m.

Afghan officials say a number of civilians have been killed during a raid on Taliban hideouts by Afghan special forces in the southern Helmand province.

There were conflicting reports on the numbers of killed and wounded on Monday.

The U.S. military says 22 Taliban fighters were killed in that raid.

But Abdul Majed Akhund, deputy provincial councilman, said Monday three civilians hurt in the attack died on the way to hospital.

Akhund said authorities are investigating reports that at least 24 people attending a wedding died in the raid Sunday night in Musa Qala district, which is under Taliban control.

Omar Zwak, the provincial governor’s spokesman, says 14 insurgents including six foreigners were killed during the raid. They were investigating reports of civilian casualties.