Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Gunman who killed NATO soldier may have been contract security guard

KABUL, Afghanistan — A gunman who may have been a contract security guard killed a member of the international coalition force in southern Afghanistan and in turn was slain, NATO said in a written statement Saturday.

The nationalities of the coalition member and the assailant were not released.

Ghulam Gelani Farahee, deputy police chief of Zabol province, said that the shooting took place at a remote location, and that information remained scarce. The man described as a security guard, known as a "local guard," was contracted by NATO, he said.

The periphery of many NATO facilities, embassies and soft targets such as Western hotels and the headquarters of civic groups, are protected by private or government-employed Afghan security guards.

There was no claim of responsibility for the shooting. There have been a growing number of attacks in the past several years in which foreign troops were killed by men in Afghan police, army or related security uniforms. The Taliban has encouraged insider strikes, often exploiting them for publicity purposes.

These attacks serve several purposes, analysts said. They sow distrust between the foreign and Afghan militaries when cooperation is increasingly important. Foreign combat troops are scheduled to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2014, placing a premium on cooperation, joint patrols and training as Afghans assume more responsibility.

BOGOTA, Colombia — A small plane on a U.S. counter-drug mission crashed Saturday in a remote, jungle region of northern Colombia, killing three Americans and a Panamanian National Guardsman and seriously injuring the other two Americans aboard.

The Havilland Dash 8 was flying over the western Caribbean when it lost radio contact with the U.S.-sponsored multinational task force in Key West that runs drug interdiction in region, the U.S. military said.

Such planes typically track speedboats that smuggle cocaine from Colombia north into Central America and the Caribbean, but U.S. Southern Command spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Ron Flanders said he did not have details on the mission.

It was not clear if the Americans aboard were all military contractors, although SouthCom did say that the plane was contracted by the U.S. government.

The twin-engine turboprop plane went down near the city of Capurgana close to the border with Panama.

The two injured Americans were rescued by Colombian soldiers and taken to a hospital in the capital, Bogota, SouthCom said. The names of the Americans were withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Gen. Nicasio de Jesus Martinez, commander of the Colombian army's Brigade IV whose troops traveled to the accident scene, ruled out the possibility that the plane was shot down by rebels active in Colombia.

"There was no aggression, no impact," said Martinez, adding that it was too soon to know if the crash was caused by mechanical failure, human error or the weather. SouthCom also said there was no indication the plane was shot down.

The region where it crashed is mountainous jungle and rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, operate there along with drug traffickers.

Local farmers reported that the plane went down about 1 a.m. in a rural part of the municipality of Acandi.

Deaths

As of Saturday, 2,142 U.S. troops have died in the war in Afghanistan. Identifications as reported by the U.S. military and not previously published:

Army Staff Sgt. Thomas A. Baysore Jr., 31, Milton, Pa.; small-arms fire Sept. 26; Paktya province.

Army Sgt. William D. Brown III, 44, Franklin, N.C.; noncombat incident Sept. 19; Laghman province.

Navy Chief Warrant Officer Jonathon S. Gibson, 32, Aurora, Ore.; helicopter crash Sept. 22; Red Sea.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Landon L. Jones, 35, Lompoc, Calif.; helicopter crash Sept. 22; Red Sea.

Army Staff Sgt. Timothy R. McGill, 30, Ramsey, N.J.; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Staff Sgt. Liam J. Nevins, 32, Denver; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Sgt. Joshua J. Strickland, 23, Woodstock, Ga.; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Spc. James T. Wickliffchacin, 22, Edmond, Okla.; died Sept. 20 at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, of injuries sustained in explosion Aug. 12 in Pul-E-Alam.

Deaths

As of Saturday, 2,142 U.S. troops have died in the war in Afghanistan. Identifications as reported by the U.S. military and not previously published:

Army Staff Sgt. Thomas A. Baysore Jr., 31, Milton, Pa.; small-arms fire Sept. 26; Paktya province.

Army Sgt. William D. Brown III, 44, Franklin, N.C.; noncombat incident Sept. 19; Laghman province.

Navy Chief Warrant Officer Jonathon S. Gibson, 32, Aurora, Ore.; helicopter crash Sept. 22; Red Sea.

• Navy Lt. Cmdr. Landon L. Jones, 35, Lompoc, Calif.; helicopter crash Sept. 22; Red Sea.

Army Staff Sgt. Timothy R. McGill, 30, Ramsey, N.J.; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Staff Sgt. Liam J. Nevins, 32, Denver; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Sgt. Joshua J. Strickland, 23, Woodstock, Ga.; small-arms fire Sept. 21; Gardez.

Army Spc. James T. Wickliffchacin, 22, Edmond, Okla.; died Sept. 20 at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, of injuries sustained in explosion Aug. 12 in Pul-E-Alam.

Gunman who killed NATO soldier may have been contract security guard 10/05/13 [Last modified: Saturday, October 5, 2013 10:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Tribune News Service.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Review: Arcade Fire open hearts, play with passion at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa

    Blogs

    Gloves off, hearts open and disco balls glittering, Arcade Fire scaled the stage for the first time ever in Tampa, pouncing and flailing and performing with all the passion that’s made them one of the world’s most celebrated rock bands this century.

    Arcade Fire performed at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa on Sept. 22, 2017.
  2. Lightning's Steven Stamkos looks close to top form in first game since November

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — The wait felt like forever for Lightning captain Steven Stamkos, having gone 10 months without playing in a game.

    A scramble in front of the Lightning goal has Matthew Peca, far left, and Erik Cernak, middle, helping out goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy during the third period of a 3-1 win against the Predators. Vasilevskiy, who made 29 saves, was “exceptional,” coach Jon Cooper says.
  3. Rays journal: Alex Cobb may have pitched last game in Rays uniform (w/video)

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — RHP Alex Cobb pitched well enough to lead the Rays to an 8-3 win over the Orioles on Friday.

    Wilson Ramos gives thanks after hitting a grand slam during the second inning, putting the Rays up 4-0.
  4. Steven Souza Jr. vindicating big trade for Rays

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — There was a time when the three-team, 11-player transaction the Rays orchestrated to get Steven Souza Jr. from the Nationals looked liked a bad deal.

    The Rays’ Steven Souza Jr. has 30 home runs this season while improving his defense and baserunning but wants to improve on his .236 batting average.
  5. Fennelly: Lightning's Manon Rheaume made history 25 years ago Saturday

    Lightning Strikes

    The name is part of Lightning history, hockey history, sports history.

    Lightning goalie Manon Rheaume became the first woman to play in an NHL game 25 years ago today.