KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An Afghan soldier opened fire on U.S. troops in Afghanistan on Wednesday, wounding three before he was shot dead by American troops, an official and an eyewitness said. One of the U.S. soldiers, who has not been identified, has been confirmed to be KIA in the attack.
The incident happened after a meeting between Afghan provincial leaders and a U.S. Embassy official in the compound of the provincial governor in the city of Jalalabad, according to Gen. Fazel Ahmad Sherzad.
U.S. officials could not immediately be reached for comment.
It is the second insider attack this year. An Afghan soldier killed three American contractors on January 29. The shooter was also killed in that incident.
Sherzad, who is police chief for eastern Nangarhar province, said the incident happened immediately after the meeting and the embassy official has left.
“Right after the U.S. official had left, suddenly an Afghan army soldier opened fire on the U.S. soldiers who were present in the compound,” Sherzad told The Associated Press.
The American troops returned fire, killing the Afghan soldier, whom Sherzad identified as Abdul Azim, from Laghman province.
The motive for his attack was not immediately known.
Information was sketchy and an eyewitness told the AP that four U.S. troops had been wounded in the attack — not three as Sherzad said — and were being treated at a clinic on the American base in Jalalabad.
The witness, an Afghan interpreter working with the U.S. troops, said that no U.S. soldiers had died in the incident.
“Only the ANA (Afghan National Army) soldier died, we killed him straight away,” said the witness, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to media.
Earlier, an Afghan official said two people were killed and three wounded in an ambush late Tuesday aimed at police in eastern Kunar province, where the Taliban have a strong presence.
Farid Dhekhan, the spokesman for the provincial police chief, said the attack, which occurred in Narang district, targeted a police vehicle, which escaped unharmed. The dead were a man and woman from the same family, Dhekhan said, speaking on Wednesday.
Kunar is on the eastern border with Pakistan and has long been an insurgent stronghold.
The Western-backed Afghan government’s nearly 13-year war against the insurgents has intensified as both sides seek to strengthen their positions ahead of possible peace talks.
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