Saturday, April 21, 2018

Men in Afghan police uniforms kill 2 NATO troops

KABUL, Afghanistan — Men wearing Afghan police uniforms shot dead two NATO service members Saturday in southern Afghanistan, authorities said, the latest in a string of attacks on international troops by Afghan security forces or militants disguised as police.

Two other coalition service members also died Saturday in south Afghanistan, one from a roadside bomb and another of non-battle-related injuries.

There were conflicting reports about the shooting in Helmand province.

Fareed Ahmad, a spokesman for the Helmand provincial police, said two Afghan policemen opened fire on coalition troops at 3 p.m. at a joint Afghan-coalition compound, killing two coalition troops. He said a third Afghan policeman fired at the attackers, killing one and wounding the other, who escaped.

The attackers had been members of the Afghan National Police for one year and were from Nangarhar province in eastern Afghanistan, according to Ahmad.

NATO said it was aware of the Afghan statements. But "our reporting right now says that they were insurgents dressed in police uniform," said a NATO spokesman in Kabul, Sgt. Thomas Dow.

The coalition also said that one attacker was killed and the second was being pursued, and that the shooting was still being investigated.

A man wearing an Afghan army uniform shot dead a U.S. soldier Friday in eastern Afghanistan. That shooting was the 15th incident this year in which Afghan soldiers or insurgents disguised in military uniforms have turned their weapons on foreign troops, according to NATO.

So far this month, 18 NATO service members have been killed in Afghanistan.

Separately, four Afghan police officers were killed in the northwestern province of Badghis when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb.

U.S.-Pakistan talks: The top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, and Pakistani army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani met Saturday. The talks in Islamabad, Pakistan, were aimed at improving border coordination and came six months after American airstrikes accidentally killed 24 Pakistani soldiers along the frontier. Islamabad retaliated by closing its border crossings to supplies meant for NATO troops in Afghanistan.

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