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    Afghan staff react inside a Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) hospital after an air strike in the city of Kunduz, Afghanistan in this October 3, 2015

    MSF Urges Obama to Consent to Independent Investigation Into Kunduz Attack

    © REUTERS / Medecins Sans Frontieres/Handout via Reuters
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    Doctors Without Borders (Medecins Sans Frontieres, or MSF) is urging US President Barack Obama to consent to an independent investigation into the US bombing of the international medical organization’s hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The hospital, with some 200 people inside, was hit by an hour-long series of US aerial bombing raids on October 3. At least 37 people were injured, 12 MSF staff members and 10 patients were killed.

    "We call on President Obama to consent to the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission investigation without delay. Consenting to the inquiry is a critical step for President Obama to demonstrate the US government's commitment to the Geneva conventions, and that US forces recognize and respect medical facilities as protected spaces under international humanitarian law," Jason Cone, executive director of MSF-USA said on Thursday.

    MSF considers the bombing a war crime and a "grave violation of international humanitarian law" and has asked for an independent investigation into the atrocity.

    "Investigations have been launched by the US, NATO, and the Afghan government, but it is impossible to expect parties involved in the conflict to carry out independent and impartial investigations of military actions in which they are themselves implicated," MSF said in a Thursday statement.

    Afghan (MSF) surgeons work inside a Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) hospital after an air strike in the city of Kunduz, Afghanistan in this October 3, 2015
    © REUTERS / Medecins Sans Frontieres/Handout via Reuters
    Afghan (MSF) surgeons work inside a Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) hospital after an air strike in the city of Kunduz, Afghanistan in this October 3, 2015

     

    Earlier, MSF said that the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission (IHFFC), the only permanent body set up specifically to investigate violations of international humanitarian law, had launched an investigation into the Kunduz bombing at its own initiative.

    However, an IHFFC investigation needs consent from the United States and the Obama administration before it can proceed, as it can only act based on the consent of concerned states.

    US President Barack Obama spoke by telephone with MSF International President Joanne Liu after the Kunduz bombing and apologized for the attack.

    According to MSF, the hospital in Kunduz was completely destroyed after the US bombing, which cut off access to emergency trauma care for hundreds of thousands of people in northern Afghanistan.

    Afghanistan continues to be in a state of political and social turmoil as the Taliban and Islamic State radicals take advantage of instability in the country, which has persisted since the 2001 US-led interference.

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    Tags:
    Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), Afghanistan, United States, Kunduz
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