New Satellite Images Show Doctors Without Borders Hospital Before and After US Airstrike
New images show the hospital in Kunduz before it was mistakenly hit.
— -- New satellite images released by Doctors Without Borders, or Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), show a hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, before and after U.S. airstrikes hit the building.
The first satellite image is from 2011 and outlines the MSF hospital compound, highlighting the main building in the center. The second satellite image shows the area after the airstrike with only the main building completely destroyed. The images can be seen on MSF’s YouTube channel.
MSF says the hospital saw 68,000 emergency patients between 2011 and the time of the Oct. 3 attack.
U.S. air support struck the hospital as Afghan forces and the Taliban battled for control of the city. U.S. special operations troops called in the strike to support Afghan troops on the ground, U.S. officials said after some initial confusion over who requested the air support. MSF says it provided the GPS coordinates of the hospital.
President Obama has apologized to Doctors Without Borders for the deadly U.S. airstrike, which the United States has called a mistake.
The U.S. military, NATO, and the Afghan government are conducting investigations into the attack, but MSF continues to demand an independent inquiry.
In a statement last week, MSF announced that the death toll had risen to 30 people, including “10 known patients, 13 known staff and seven unrecognizable bodies.”
Dramatic photos from inside the hospital revealed the destruction that occurred that day.
The photos, taken by Andrew Quilty for Foreign Policy, show the hospital in ruin. Medical equipment and furniture charred by fire are thrown about the rooms and hallways. Parts of the walls have crumpled and much of the ceiling is destroyed.
Human remains can be seen in several of the photos. One gut-wrenching image shows a human foot on top of a largely intact hospital gown.
The Taliban announced its complete withdrawal from Kunduz Oct. 13 after holding the city for 15 days. The Taliban’s taking of Kunduz marked the first time the Taliban had taken control of a major Afghan city since they were ousted from power in 2001.
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