The United States has reportedly dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb in an area of Afghanistan filled with ISIS militants.
The Independent, citing the Pentagon, states that this is the first time the 21,000-pound weapon was used in combat.
Nicknamed the MOAB – “mother of all bombs” – the bomb was reportedly dropped after 7 pm local time.
According to CNN, military sources say the target was “an ISIS tunnel and cave complex.”
“At 7:32 pm local time today, U.S. Forces – Afghanistan conducted a strike on an ISIS-K tunnel complex in Achin district, Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, as part of ongoing efforts to defeat ISIS-K in Afghanistan in 2017,” said US Central Command in a statement, according to Business Insider.
“The strike was designed to minimize the risk to Afghan and U.S. Forces conducting clearing operations in the area while maximizing the destruction of ISIS-K fighters and facilities.”
U.S. officials reportedly did their best to avoid casualties. But given the scope of the MOAB, damage to the surrounding areas will be extensive.
Al Masdar News, citing the Syrian Ministry of Defense, says hundreds of militants have died in the attack.