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Afghanistan, US probe attack that killed two US soldiers

U.S. Air Force Capt., Matthew Zahler, and Major Jason Helton, air mobility liaison officer, uses a translator to talk to Afghan border police about the best location to establish a drop zone near their remote compound in southern afghanistan. Capt. Zahler relies on local knowledge of the area in order to avoid establishing the drop zone on old mine fields and areas used by Taliban fighters. (U.S. Air Force/Released)

A delegation led by Afghanistan’s Chief of Army Staff, Bismillah Waziri, is investigating together with the U.S. a shooting incident that killed two American soldiers and one Afghan soldier in eastern Nangarhar province.

The shooting, carried out late yesterday by an Afghan in military uniform, also wounded six American and three Afghan soldiers, Afghanistan’s defense ministry said in a WhatsApp statement.

A U.S. military spokesman in Kabul, Sonny Leggett, also confirmed the incident saying it was under investigation and the cause and motive behind the attack is unknown for now.

“An individual in an Afghan uniform opened fire on the combined U.S. and Afghan force with a machine gun,” Leggett said in the statement.

The firefight took place when the U.S. and Afghan soldiers were visiting an Afghan army base in the Sherzad district of the province for an operation, Ajmal Omar, a senior member of Nangarhar’s provincial council, said by phone. “After greetings, one of the Afghan commandos opened fire on them.”

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“Incidents such as this fail to have negative effects on the friendship and spirit of cooperation” between the Afghan and U.S. forces, according to the ministry’s statement.

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(c) 2020 Bloomberg News
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.