Gen. John Nicholson, commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, addresses a press briefing in Kabul, capital of Afghanistan, on April 14, 2017. (Xinhua/Lu Shuqun)
KABUL, April 14 (Xinhua) -- No civilian casualties were reported following Thursday's massive U.S. bombing against an Islamic State (IS) position in Afghanistan, the U.S. and NATO commander said on Friday.
On Thursday evening, the U.S. military dropped a GBU-43 or Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb, the largest non-nuclear bomb, on an IS cave complex in Achin District, eastern Nangahar Province bordering Pakistan.
"We have Afghan and U.S. Forces at the site and we see no evidence of civilian casualties nor have there been reports," Gen. John Nicholson told a press briefing here.
This is the first time that the U.S. military used in combat the massive bomb, nicknamed "the mother of all bombs."
"This was the right weapon against the right target," he said, adding that "I want to assure the people of Afghanistan that our forces took every possible precaution to prevent civilian casualties."
At least 82 militants of IS group had been killed following the raid that also destroyed a big IS hideout along with several bunkers as well as a 300-meter-long tunnels, according to Attaullah Khogyani, spokesman of provincial government.
Earlier Friday, the Afghan Defense Ministry, based on initial findings, said that 36 IS militants were killed by the attack.
The mountainous province with Jalalabad city as its capital, 120 km east of Kabul, has been the scene of clashes between security forces and IS militants since the emergence of IS there in early 2015.
More than 1,900 IS militants, several Afghan security forces and two U.S. soldiers have been killed in Achin and neighboring districts since 2015, according to Afghan military officials.