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American service members, contractor killed by bomb in Afghanistan

09 April, 2019, 08:23 | Author: Taylor George
  • Japanese Ambassador Kuninori Matsuda presenting his credentials to President Arif Alvi on 29th March 2019. — Embassy of Japan website

Three US service members and a contractor have been killed in Afghanistan by an explosive device, the NATO-led Resolute Support mission said in a statement.

No group has taken responsibility for the attack either. Also, activists in Sudan say attempts by security forces to quash a protest set off widespread violence, killing at least six people since Saturday.

Officials did not immediately release the names of those killed, in line with standard policy pending notification of next of kin, or the nationality of the contractor.

A statement from the military said the wounded service members have been evacuated and are receiving medical care.

The latest deaths bring the number of USA service member deaths in Afghanistan to seven in 2019, and a total of 68 US military deaths since January 2015, according to US government and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation reports.

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The violence continues in the country despite the USA and the Taliban holding several rounds of peace talks since late a year ago, with the latest one ending earlier this month.

The US has about 14,000 troops in Afghanistan, where they primarily advise Afghan forces battling the Taliban and the local ISIS affiliate. Dozens more have been wounded. The insurgents dismiss the Afghan government as a USA puppet. Abdullah Abdullah shares power with President Ashraf Ghani in a USA -brokered unity government.

The Taliban have held talks with a US envoy in recent months while continuing to carry out daily attacks on Afghan forces.

The diplomatic spat between Washington and Kabul came to a head last month when Afghanistan's national security advisor Hamdullah Mohib accused Khalilzad of a lack of "transparency", even suggesting the Afghan-born envoy wanted to be "viceroy" of his native country. The outspoken advisor visited eastern provinces when Khalilzad was in Kabul.

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