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Afghan President Orders Probe Into Deadly U.S. Air Strikes

A man injured in the U.S.-led air strikes receiving treatment at a Kandahar hospital on May 22 (epa) May 23, 2006 -- Afghan President Hamid Karzai today ordered an investigation into U.S. air strikes that killed more than a dozen civilians in a village in the southern Kandahar Province.

A statement from Karzai's office said the bombing of the village that began late on May 21 and ended early on May 22, killed 16 civilians.

The U.S.-led coalition has said dozens of suspected militants were killed in the air strikes.

The president's statement says Karzai is concerned over the deaths while also condemning militants for using civilians as human shields. An Afghan official previously said that militants had hidden in villagers' homes during the raid.

The statement also said that Karzai has requested to talk with the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan over the incident.