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Pentagon Admits Mistaken Forced Entry At Afghan Doctors' Hospital

U.S. military personnel rammed into the gate of a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) hospital in Afghanistan last week to gain access to the building, the Pentagon said October 19.

MSF said last week that a tank had entered the grounds of its hospital in Kunduz without permission, damaging the compound, destroying potential evidence, and distressing its staff.

Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis said that the vehicle was transporting a team October 15 to conduct an inspection to determine the structural integrity of the building.

The team mistakenly believed there were no MSF personnel at the site when they rammed the gate, he said.

"Unbeknownst to our team there were MSF personnel, and they were understandably not happy," Davis said. "They should have coordinated ahead of time, and they are going to make it right and make sure that that gate is repaired."

An October 3 bombardment of the hospital killed at least 22 staff and patients. The U.S. military has taken responsibility, saying the incident occurred during intense fighting between Afghan forces and the Taliban.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP