Thursday, 20 September, 2018

US service member killed in Afghanistan insider attack

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Ray Hunter | 10 July, 2018, 08:24

There are about 14,000 USA military personnel in Afghanistan, a lot of them serving as trainers and advisers with the Afghan military in their fight against the Taliban and ISIS.

Maciel was killed and two other American service members were wounded in what United States military officials called an "apparent insider attack" on July 7 while they were advising local forces at an Afghan military facility in the town of Tarin Kowt in Uruzgan Province. The Taliban said the attacker acted on his own, but added that it "appreciated" his murderous efforts.

The name of the killed soldier has not been released.

Officials said the incident is being investigated, and no further details were immediately available.

He was deployed in support of the 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade.

"The wounded service members, who are in stable condition, are now being treated", said the statement.

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The attack took place in southern Afghanistan on Saturday, a statement from the Nato-led Resolute Support mission said.

Pompeo also added, perhaps optimistically given Afghanistan's long history of resisting foreign forces, that the Taliban were "beginning to see that they can not wait us out".

The Taliban did not claim responsibility for the attack, but acknowledged it in a message on its official Telegram channel.

During a press conference with Pompeo and Gani, Pompeo said the Trump administration's strategy of sending more USA troops into Afghanistan to push the Taliban toward negotiations is "indeed working".

This is the third combat fatality in Afghanistan this year. Though a recent ceasefire gave people hope that an end is in sight, it lasted for only three days, according to The Washington Post. "The Taliban have gained ground, USA airstrikes have spiked to put pressure on the group to negotiate, and civilian casualties have increased - partly due to those airstrikes but mostly because of Taliban attacks, and some ISIS attacks".

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