THE deaths of two children during an allied operation in Afghanistan are being investigated by the Australian Defence Force.
Australian soldiers were involved in a retaliation attack on the Taliban in the Oruzgan province late last week when two boys, aged seven and eight were caught in the cross fire.
They boys were reportedly tending to cattle.
Australian Defence Force chief, General David Hurley said in a statement on the weekend said "We deeply regret that the International Security Assistance Forces were responsible for the unintended death" of the boys but it would be "premature" to make any determination about how the incident occurred.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard would not be drawn on the investigation at a press conference in Sydney on Sunday.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott described it as "a horrible feature of war".
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