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Civilians Killed in Airstrikes in Afghanistan

U.S.-led coalition forces in Afghanistan and local officials say that civilians were among those killed in airstrikes in southern Afghanistan on Friday.

Afghan officials in Gereshk district say more than 30 civilians were killed and others were wounded when fighter jets pounded militants in a village in southern Helmand province. They say 35 militants also were killed.

The militants had sought cover in the village after intense fighting with foreign troops.

A spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition, Major Chris Belcher, Saturday said the remains of some people who appeared to be civilians were found among the bodies of insurgents. He said the civilians were killed in firing positions along a trench line.

Major Belcher did not provide casualty figures.

Also Saturday, NATO said one of its soldiers was killed in a battle with Taleban fighters in the south.

The U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, William Wood, has said Taleban militants are to blame for many civilian casualties because they involve civilians in attacks.

Last week, Afghan President Hamid Karzai accused NATO and U.S.-led forces of carelessly killing 90 civilians in recent operations against the Taleban.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.