The U.S. military is under fire after a training incident gone awry.
According to a recent report, a group of soldiers was engaged in a training exercise in Bulgaria when a mistake sent them off course. The group was assigned the task of clearing and securing multiple structures on the U.S. airbase in Cheshnigirovo
Task and Purpose said the soldiers with the 173rd Airborne Brigade then accidentally stormed an operating factory next door, seizing and clearing the premises of the company’s bewildered and, no doubt, terrified employees.
Some evidence suggests the factory, which reportedly produces equipment used in olive oil production, was entered by soldiers with weapons drawn, though the Army has stressed that no firearms were discharged in the incident. Either way, the media source Arms Watch reported that the factory’s owner has since filed a lawsuit.
And Bulgarian President Rumen Radev isn’t too happy either. He is demanding a full investigation, calling it “inadmissable” that Bulgarian citizens' lives were put at risk, saying, “The exercises with our allies on the territory of Bulgaria should contribute to building security and trust in collective defense, not breed tension.”
In a statement issued by the U.S. Embassy, the U.S. military apologized for the disastrous training incident and said it will investigate the cause. Meanwhile, no soldiers have been disciplined in relation to the event.