USA forces in Afghanistan revised on Tuesday the death toll from a Taliban attack the previous day near the main American base in the country, saying three service members were killed but not a contractor who was initially reported among the fatalities. Defense Department officials told The Wall Street Journal that the explosion was the result of a Taliban attack on a convoy carrying the American service members.
Prior to Monday's attack, there had been a total of four American troops killed in Afghanistan in 2019: Sgt. Cameron Meddock, Staff Sgt. Joshua Z. Beale, Spc.
In a statement, the military said three other USA troops were wounded in the explosion and were receiving treatment. The contractor was later identified and treated at Bagram Airfield, officials said in a release Tuesday. The base in Bagram district is located in northern Parwan province and serves as the main US air facility in the country.
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According to the NATO-led Resolute Support mission in the country, the troops' convoy hit a roadside bomb that also wounded three United States troops. In November, a roadside bomb blast killed three USA service members near the central Afghan city of Ghazni. Afghan officials said the blast killed a police officer and a civilian while eight other people were injured.
The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack and described it as a suicide auto bombing. The conflicting accounts could not be immediately reconciled. Abdul Shakor Qudosi, the district administrative chief in Bagram, said American soldiers opened fire immediately after their convoy was bombed.
While their primary mission is to advise and assist Afghan security forces, US troops continue to conduct daily patrols throughout Afghanistan.
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"USA service members have sacrificed their lives in Afghanistan to keep us safe and no cowardly act of terror will impede our efforts to achieve peace", Pompeo said in a statement posted in his Twitter account.
Abdullah said the Taliban could partake in elections and even compete for the presidency if they renounce violence. 13 were killed past year.
The Taliban has until now refused to meet with the Kabul government, accusing it of being a puppet regime.
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