The strike reportedly took out a vehicle armed with explosives that allegedly posed a threat to Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport, which was the site of a devastating suicide bombing just days before. U.S. Central Command later acknowledged in a statement that "we know that there were substantial and powerful subsequent explosions resulting from the destruction of the vehicle, indicating a large amount of explosive material inside that may have caused additional casualties," adding that "it is unclear what may have happened, and we are investigating further."
Los Angeles Times foreign correspondent Nabih Bulos, who is in Kabul, reported that it's still not certain whether the U.S. drone strike was the cause of the fatalities because there were also reports of a mortar attack in the same area. One way to tell, he said, is by the Pentagon clarifying what type of missile it used.
If it was the same strike, though, Bulos lamented that the 20-year war in Afghanistan ended the way it started, "with civilians bearing the brunt of it."