Taliban bombing kills three US soldiers in eastern Afghanistan

Taliban bombing kills three US soldiers in eastern Afghanistan
Three US troops were killed by a Taliban roadside bomb in what is thought to be the deadliest attack on US forces in Afghanistan in 17 months.
2 min read
27 November, 2018
US troops at the site of a car bombing in Kabul in 2017 [Getty]
A roadside bomb blast killed three American soldiers in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday, according to the US military, in what appeared to be the deadliest attack on American forces in Afghanistan for over a year.

The military said that three other service members were wounded when the bomb went off near the restive city of Ghazni. An American contractor was also wounded, it said. The military did not immediately identify any of the casualties.

Lt. Ubon Mendie, a military spokesman, said the wounded were evacuated and are receiving medical care.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, saying a US tank was completely destroyed.

The blast is thought to be the deadliest attack on American forces since June 2017, when an Afghan army soldier, purpotedly acting on behalf of the Taliban, shot and killed three US soldiers in an insider attack in the Achin district of the eastern Nangarhar province.

The Taliban carry out near-daily attacks on Afghan forces, and in August the insurgents overran parts of Ghazni, leading to days of intense fighting before they were driven out. Ghazni was the only one of Afghanistan's 34 provinces where parliamentary elections could not be held in October. Voting there has been postponed for a year.

The US and NATO formally concluded their combat mission in Afghanistan in 2014, but 15,000 American forces remain in the country providing support to Afghan forces and carrying out counterterrorism operations.

In a separate incident on Tuesday, the Taliban abducted 21 passengers from two vans that were travelling through the northern Sari Pul province, according to Habibullah Mujahidzada, the district police chief. It was not immediately clear what motivated the abduction, and there was no immediate comment from the Taliban.

US officials have been holding talks with the Taliban in Qatar in recent months, in a bid to end the violence before the April elections. However the country's de facto Prime Minister Abdullah Abdullah said the militant group are not serious about brokering any peace deal.