NATO’s supreme commander has said he supports an independent investigation into an allegedly errant bombing of a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Northeastern Afghanistan.
NATO's supreme commander said he supports an independent investigation into the bombing of a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz that killed 22 people. Doctors Without Borders, also known by its French acronym MSF, has called for an independent war crimes probe.
US President Barack Obama has apologized for the attack in the Afghan city of Kunduz, but high-ranking US officials have not previously supported an independent investigation.
Philip Breedlove, NATO Supreme Commander and four-star US Air Force General, told Deutsche Welle that he supports the investigation called for by Doctors Without Borders, through the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission (IHFFC).
Breedlove's comments came during an exclusive interview with Tim Sebastian on Conflict Zone that will air on Deutsche Welle on October 14.
When Sebastian asked about an investigation, “using a fact-finding body set up under the Geneva Conventions, which is what Medecins Sans Frontiers are talking about,” General Breedlove responded, “I think this is their absolute right to ask for this investigation.”
“And you'd support that?” Sebastian asked.
“We will support it,” Breedlove responded, “We're going to support it.”
Breedlove added that such an investigation would also receive his personal support.
Investigations are already underway by NATO, the US Department of Justice, the Pentagon and a combined American-Afghan group.
But the head of Doctors Without Borders has said military investigations are not enough and that the IHFFC is “the only permanent body set up specifically to investigate violations of international humanitarian law.” The attack killed 10 staff members of Doctors Without Borders and 12 patients.