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8 Feb, 2020 18:32

US & Afghan forces come under ‘direct fire’ in eastern Afghanistan

US & Afghan forces come under ‘direct fire’ in eastern Afghanistan

American and Afghan troops have been attacked and have suffered casualties during an operation in eastern Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province, a US military spokesman said.

“A combined US and Afghan force conducting an operation in Nangarhar Province was engaged by direct fire on February 8," Col. Sonny Leggett, spokesperson for US forces in Afghanistan, announced.

Casualties were suffered in the attack, Leggett said without revealing any exact numbers.

“We are assessing the situation and will provide further updates as they become available,” he added.

Also on rt.com ‘No indication of enemy fire’: US forces in Afghanistan confirm loss of recon plane

Both Taliban and affiliates of  Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) are active in Eastern Nangarhar province.

There’s also a possibility that it was an insider attack. Mubariz Khadem, a senior security official in Nangarhar, told Reuters that US and Afghan forces clashed. The so called "green-on-blue" attacks used to be frequent during 18 years of American presence in the country, but have not taken place recently.  

There are currently around 14,000 US troops in Afghanistan that are to train and assist Afghan forces as Washington is engaged in on and off negotiations with the Taliban the withdrawal of foreign forces in exchange for security guarantees.

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