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Drone may have killed U.S. troops in Afghanistan

A Predator drone
Getty Images

WASHINGTON - The U.S. military is investigating what appears to be the first case of American troops killed by a missile from a U.S. drone.

Two senior Pentagon officials said Tuesday the investigation is looking at the deaths of a Marine and a Navy medic in southern Afghanistan. The two were apparently mistaken for insurgents. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is pending.

Unmanned Predators have been used widely in the war in Afghanistan and in neighboring Pakistan. Some are used for surveillance and some, such as the drone in this case, can fire Hellfire missiles.

Officials say this is the first case they know of in which a drone was involved in a friendly fire incident and they are trying to determine how it happened.