Published: Fri, June 16, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Two US soldiers killed in attack by Afghan soldier


The US Defense Department is conducting investigation, Pentagon said in a statement.

The US soldiers killed or wounded are Army Rangers. Their families are still being notified. The gunman was killed by American troops, according to a security official in the province. "One US soldier was wounded and has been evacuated for medical treatment", a spokesman added.

"The infiltrator was killed by other Afghan soldiers on the ground", read a statement from the Taliban.

Allied commanders provided limited details.

Approximately 8,000 USA troops are deployed to Afghanistan as part of two separate operations. "Additional information will be released as appropriate".

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Three US soldiers were wounded after being shot by an Afghan soldier in a base in Helmand province on March 19.

In an emailed statement, the USA military said only: "We are aware of an incident in eastern Afghanistan".

The so-called "friendly fire" incident occurred overnight, during a raid in Afghanistan's restive Helmand province, the U.S. military command in Kabul said in a statement.

"The Afghan commando was also killed in counterattack". The Pentagon has not yet officially confirmed the deaths. The insurgents are known to exaggerate battlefield claims. The blast flattened a swath of the countryside. The deployment of the so-called Mother Of All Bombs killed dozens of jihadists but fighting in the area has continued.

The group and the official numbers usually differ. A US Army Special Forces soldier was killed fighting the terror group there in early April.

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But sources from Helmand said the number of casualties is much higher than what the governor's office has claimed.

As it was confirmed by one United States official, the incident was a "green-on-blue" attack by the opponent army member of the Afgan security forces in Nangarhar Province.

The motivations for such attacks are sometimes unclear, with some resulting from personal conflicts while others may be due to the Taliban's infiltrating the Afghan military.

The incident in Helmand, like the one in Nangarhar, involved US forces working in partnership with Afghan commandos, but there was no indication that the incidents were connected.

Taliban fighters have made widespread gains in Helmand, seizing numerous province's districts and threatening the provincial capital of Lashkar Gah.

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Gowens and Gibbons-Neff write for The Washington Post.

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