A US-led coalition airstrike in western Mosul has claimed the lives of 13 civilians, says an Iraqi air force pilot.
According to a report published by the Anadolu Agency on Wednesday, the strike targeted several civilian homes in a residential area of Mosul’s al-Yarmouk neighborhood, which was recently liberated from Daesh.
“The strike also left 17 people injured, mostly seriously,” the news agency quoted Yazan al-Duberdani, the Iraqi pilot, as saying.
The latest civilian causalities came just a day after three members of one Iraqi family were killed in a US airstrike in the city.
The United States and some its allies have been carrying out airstrikes in Iraq since June 2014 allegedly targeting Daesh terrorists. The raids, which have done little to dislodge the terror group, have on numerous occasions claimed many civilian lives and inflicted damage on the country’s infrastructure.
On March 17, Iraq’s Kurdish-language Rudaw television network reported that 237 people had been killed in US-led coalition airstrikes on a Daesh-held neighborhood in western Mosul.
Last month, Amnesty International voiced its concerns over the number of civilian casualties in Mosul, suggesting the US-led coalition may not be doing enough to avoid such casualties.
The UN also expressed “profound concern” over the increase of civilian casualties in the Iraqi city and called on all parties engaged in anti-terror operations in the country to avoid “indiscriminate use of firepower.”
The US-led coalition said on April 1 that at least 229 civilians have likely fallen victim to its military operations since 2014, but the figure is far less than those given by rights groups.
Airwars, an NGO monitoring civilian casualties in international airstrikes, has put the number of civilian deaths at over 2,830.
Hidden agenda behind US raids
Observers are deeply suspicious of the real intention behind Washington’s so-called anti-Daesh raids.
In a Wednesday interview with Press TV, Mike Harris, a Veterans Today editor, said the US military is pursuing “another agenda” under the guise of fighting terrorism.
“I believe there is a fifth column operating within the US that is doing things that are counter to the stated US objectives and counter to the constitutionality that the US is built upon,” Harris said.
He also maintained that the agenda is to keep Daesh terrorists “alive” and “prosperous” in order to use them as a tool to destabilize and topple certain governments within the Middle East for the benefit of Washington’s allies in the region – namely Israel, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
Given the fact that the United States has the best targeting, surveillance and satellite systems, hitting civilians rather than the terrorists’ positions seems very peculiar, he added
The analyst concluded by saying that perhaps the United States should bomb its own airbases in order to prevent civilian deaths, referring to Washington’s recent cruise missile strike against a Syrian army airfield.