White House Releases Count of Civilians Killed in Drone Strikes

Airstrikes from remotely piloted aircraft have killed between 6?4 and 116 people since 2009, the White House announced Friday in a long-awaited report. The civilians and up to 2,581 members of terrorist groups were killed in 473 airstrikes, the White House disclosed in a report it first announced in March. The statistics came as President Obama issued an executive order aiming to limit civilian casualties and direct the director of national intelligence to release aggregate data on strikes outside of active hostilities. The order will catalogue best practices used to protect civilians and assess credible post-strike reporting from nongovernmental organizations. The White House’s number of civilian casualties is on the lower end of publicly released estimates. For example, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, which works to track civilian deaths from drone strikes, estimates, based on open source reporting, between 380 and 801 civilians were killed in the same period.