Afghan soldier attacks USA troops near Mazar-i-Sharif

Pauline Gross
June 19, 2017

An Afghan soldier opened fire on American soldiers on Saturday, injuring at least seven, the U.S. military said. The others held out against Afghan special forces that had responded to the attack, he said.

Afghan policemen gather at the site of an attack Sunday in Gardez. Initially conflicting reports emerged about the number of casualties in the attack, with Afghan officials telling Reuters that four USA troops had been killed; that number has since been revised.

On June 11 the insurgents claimed responsibility for a similar attack in which an Afghan soldier killed three U.S. soldiers and wounded a fourth in the eastern province of Nangarhar.

A spokesman for Resolute Support in Afghanistan said in a statement that all seven soldiers were medically evacuated and "are being cared for". The Taliban took credit for a similar attack that unfolded a week ago in Eastern Afghanistan that left three United States troops dead and one wounded.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the group took responsibility for the attack, claiming they had killed and injured tens of police officers. An American armed with a piston shot the assailant dead.

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For the second time in a week, a man in an Afghan army uniform opened fire on USA service members at a base in Afghanistan.

There were no US fatalities. The soldiers were assisting operations against the Islamic State in the restive eastern province. Since 2001, more than 2,000 American troops have been killed in combat and noncombat roles in the country. The mission said some U.S. soldiers might have been hurt.

"The Taliban have been able to bring in soldiers into the Afghan army and make them sleepers, as it were, until the right time", journalist Ahmed Rashid told Weekend All Things Considered in April.

US President Donald Trump is learned to have delegated authority on the number of troops in Afghanistan to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. About 5,000 non-U.S. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces are still in the country. USA troops accused their Afghan allies of "pervasive illicit drug use, massive thievery, personal instability, dishonesty, no integrity, incompetence, unsafe weapons handling, corrupt officers. high AWOL rates, bad morale, laziness (and) repulsive hygiene".

Other reports by GizPress

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