Obama Apologizes for the Killing of Two Hostages in Afghan Operation

The January operation in which Warren Weinstein and Giovanni Lo Porto were killed also resulted in the death of an American Al-Qaida leader, Ahmed Farouq.

AP

REUTERS - The United States on Thursday said an American counterterrorism operation in January killed two hostages, one American and one Italian, who were held by Al-Qaida in the border region of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The operation in which American doctor Warren Weinstein and Italian Giovanni Lo Porto were killed also resulted in the death of an American Al-Qaida leader, Ahmed Farouq, the White House said. Another American Al-Qaida member, Adam Gadahn, also was killed, likely in a separate operation, the White House added.

In a statement, the White House expressed sorrow over the hostage deaths and said the United States had no reason to believe hostages were at the targeted compound.

Obama apologizes

U.S. President Barack Obama apologized for a counterterrorism operation in January that accidentally killed two aid workers held hostage by Al-Qaida, American Warren Weinstein and Italian Giovanni Lo Porto.

"As a husband and as a father, I cannot begin to imagine the anguish that the Weinstein and Lo Porto families are enduring today," Obama told reporters, with a deep sigh, saying he took responsibility for the deaths and has ordered a full review.

"I profoundly regret what happened," Obama said, explaining he declassified some of the details of the operation so that the families could know what happened.