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No need for Trump's approval to use massive bomb

19 April 2017
No need for Trump's approval to use massive bomb

KABUL (CNN) - At least 94 Islamic State fighters were killed when the U.S. military dropped America's most powerful non-nuclear bomb on ISIS targets in Afghanistan, Afghan officials said Saturday.

Afghan Defence Ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri said no civilians were harmed in the massive blast that targeted the network of caves and tunnels, which had been heavily mined.

While US officials have upped their death count from the Afghan MOAB drop to 94, Indian authorities are claiming that at least 500 Pakistani nationals (who had been protecting the ISIS operatives in this area) were killed in the US bombing in Nangarhar province.

The GBU-43 bomb, which goes by the acronym MOAB for "massive ordnance air blast bomb", also known as the "mother of all bombs", was dropped on the tunnel complex in Achin from a United States aircraft at 7:32 pm (1502 GMT) the Pentagon said.

The strike was created to minimize the risk to Afghan and U.S. forces conducting clearing operations, while maximizing the destruction of ISIS fighters and facilities, said the U.S. Forces-Afghanistan, which is part of the NATO-led Resolute Support.

Afghanistan's ambassador to the US, Hamdullah Mohib, said the colossal MOAB was dropped after fighting had intensified over the last week.

Nicholson said thorough surveillance was conducted in the area to ensure no civilian casualties.

Take another look. The quiet valley, then you can see the bomb falling there, guided by internal Global Positioning System right to the target.

"This was the right weapon against the right target", Gen. John Nicholson, commander for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said at a news conference.

"Let me be clear - we will not relent in our mission to fight alongside our Afghan comrades to destroy ISIS-K in 2017", he said, referring to the terror group's regional branch.

Some residents in areas of Achin recently liberated from Islamic State occupation welcomed Thursday's strike, which hit headlines around the world and has been widely interpreted as a deliberate show of strength by U.S. President Donald Trump.

"Fortunately there is no report of civilians being killed in the attack", Mr Khogyani said.

Afghan ex-president, Hamid Karzai, stepped back into the news yesterday to condemn the dropping of the "Mother of All Bombs" on the nation's Nangarhar Province.

The bombing triggered shock waves in Afghanistan.

On April 8, U.S. Special Forces soldier Staff Sgt. Mark R. De Alencar was killed in Nangarhar as part of American efforts to combat the group.

Trump said Thursday the bombing was "another successful job".

The bombing came only a week after U.S. president Donald Trump ordered missile strikes against Syria in retaliation for a suspected chemical attack, and as China warned of the potential for conflict amid rising USA tensions with North Korea.

The bombing came only a week after the United States carried out a missile strike on the Shayrat Airfield near Homs, Syria, in response to an alleged chemical attack on a rebel-held town in Idlib province, the blame for which Washington pinned on the Assad government.

"I thought my house was being bombed".