Dutch court rules 2007 Afghan air strike ‘unlawful’

Thursday, Nov 24, 2022

THE HAGUE: A deadly Dutch air strike on a civilian compound in Afghanistan in 2007 was unlawful, a court in the Netherlands ruled on Wednesday, ordering the country to compensate the victims´ families.

Four Afghans, who were not named in court papers, took the Dutch state to court over the incident during fighting between international forces and the Taliban in Uruzgan province in central Afghanistan. Dutch F-16 fighter jets in the early hours of June 17, 2007, dropped 28 guided bombs in the area, of which 18 landed on walled compounds, called “qalas” near the strategic town of Chora, the court said.

Several bombs landed on one of the compounds, designated “qala 4131” killing at least 18 of the claimants´ relatives, court papers said.Dutch forces had not properly distinguished between military and civilian targets, the court ruled.