US-led coalition strikes against ISIS have killed 229 civilians: Pentagon report

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WATCH Secretary of State Rex Tillerson praised the progress made against ISIS

U.S.-led coalition airstrikes have accounted for at least 229 civilian deaths in the fight against ISIS since the operation began in 2014, the Pentagon said Saturday.

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The Pentagon also acknowledged a pair of coalition strikes during the month of February that led to four unintended civilian casualties in Iraq. The strikes, which took place on February 12 and February 16, both targeted ISIS positions near Mosul.

A statement in the report says: "We regret the unintentional loss of civilian lives resulting from Coalition efforts to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria and express our deepest sympathies to the families and others affected by these strikes."

The report, issued monthly by U.S. Central Command, does not take into account a high-profile coalition strike conducted on March 17 that may have killed up to 200 civilians. That strike, conducted near Mosul, is still under military investigation and the top U.S. commander in Iraq told reporters last week there is "a fair chance" the strike had unintended civilian casualties.

This latest monthly report is the first under the Trump administration. Despite growing concern over civilian casualties in the fight against ISIS -– sparked by the March 17 strike in Mosul –- Gen. Joseph Votel, the commander of U.S. Central Command, told a congressional committee last week that there has been no change in the rules of engagement regarding airstrikes targeting ISIS in Iraq.

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