| GEO World|
| 7 Afghan security forces killed in NATO air strike|
| Updated at: 1845 PST, Saturday, November 07, 2009|
KABUL: Seven members of the Afghan security forces were killed in a NATO air strike that also injured international forces in remote western Afghanistan, the Afghan defence ministry said on Saturday.
The Afghan statement comes as NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said it was investigating an incident in Badghis province Friday in which more than 25 international and Afghan forces were wounded.
Five of the 25 wounded were US soldiers injured in what a Western military official, speaking anonymously, said was friendly fire.
However, ISAF spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Todd Vician, of the US Air Force, told a foreign news agency: "We have nothing to confirm friendly fire."
"No ISAF members were killed," he said, confirming only that five ISAF soldiers injured in the Badghis incident were Americans.
Investigations into the incident were ongoing and no further details were available, Vician said.
Afghan defence ministry spokesman Mohammad Zahir Azimi said that the seven Afghan soldiers were killed in the same incident, in Badghis's Bala Murghab district, in which the Americans were injured.
"It was erroneous air strike which caused casualties to friendly forces," he said.
"We can confirm that four Afghan army soldiers and three police were martyred," he said.
An earlier statement from the ministry said: "The commando brigade informs us that foreign forces also sustained some casualties."
The incident is believed to have taken place during a clash involving ISAF and Afghan soldiers searching for two paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division who went missing Wednesday during a routine supply mission.
Local police said a party looking for the two missing soldiers clashed with Taliban and that alliance aircraft were called in to provide support.
The defence ministry made no reference to a clash between the joint forces and Taliban militants.
Police said the casualties occurred when the air strike mistakenly targeted international troops.