Ban Killer Drones, a national network opposed to drone attacks, is calling for reparation payments of at least $3 million for each of the 10 members of the Afghan Ahmadi family killed on August 29, 2021, by a U.S. MQ-9 Reaper drone. The group says thousands of others killed by U.S. drones deserve similar payments, which should be made under the oversight of Congress’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission.
“The $3 million U.S. payment to the family of Giovanni Lo Porto when he was killed by a U.S. drone in Pakistan in 2015 sets the minimum standard that the U.S. must meet in compensating families of civilians who are killed by U.S. drones,” said Nick Mottern, of the Ban Killer Drones network. U.S. agrees to pay nearly $3 million to the family of Italian killed in CIA strike.
“Our concern goes beyond the tragic deaths within the Ahmadi family to the thousands of victims of U.S. drone attacks,” said Brian Terrell, also a member of the Ban Killer Drones network, “most who were not those targeted and none of whom were found guilty in any court. Justice demands that compensation be paid to all their families.”
“These reparations payments obviously cannot bring back these precious lives,” Mottern said, “but they can communicate a respectful recognition by the US military of the widespread, devastating, unacceptable harm that is being inflicted by U.S. drone attacks, on individuals, families, and entire communities -communities that also must receive compensation.”
- Here is a complete list of Ban Killer Drone’s demands:
- An official apology by President Biden, as commander in chief of the U.S. military, to the Ahmadi family for the deaths of their family members.
- $3 million minimum for each of the 10 Ahmadi family members. An immediate report from the Department of Defense on who in the chain of command was responsible for the drone attack on the Ahmadis. This includes the release of all communications and logs related to the attack from the White House down to the operator who pressed the button to launch the attack, and a report on whether and what charges are to be brought against those responsible for the killings.
- That the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission of the U.S. Congress:
- investigate all U.S. drone attacks since 2001 pursuant to identifying all civilian and non-combatant victims;
- oversee the disbursement of reparations to their families;
- receive petitions and claims of victims of U.S. drone attacks and take actions as required to satisfy these petitions and claims;
- seek the appropriation of sufficient funds to compensate families of non-combatant drone attack victims at the level of $3 million for each victim;
- and provide compensation to communities that have suffered U.S. drone attacks.
- An immediate halt to all U.S. drone attacks and an end to U.S. plans and taxpayer support for weaponizing drones of all types.
The Ban Killer Drones network is comprised of concerned citizens, in local and national peace and justice organizations, many of them in communities in which there are killer drone control bases. Together they are organizing to achieve a United Nations conference to adopt and ratify an international treaty to ban weaponized drones and military and police drone surveillance.
For more information, see bankillerdrones.org
FOR RELEASE – OCT. 19, 2021
Contact: Nick Mottern – Co-coordinator