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NATO Regrets Deaths Of Eight Youths

The U.S.-led NATO force in Afghanistan says it regrets that eight young Afghan males were killed in a NATO air strike in the northeastern province of Kapisa on February 8.

British Air Commodore Mike Wigston, a NATO spokesman, told a news conference on February 15 that the eight appeared to be carrying arms, according to Afghan and French troops who were operating in the area.

NATO investigators are examining photographs of the bodies to estimate their ages, and the NATO spokesman said they appeared to be close to 15 years old, with one older.

Local officials have said they believe the boys were 6 to 14 years old.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has condemned the air strike.

U.S. General John Allen, top NATO commander in Afghanistan, has expressed condolences to local Afghans.

Compiled from agency reports