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UPDATED: 08:58, March 01, 2006
U.S. soldier killed, 2 injured in firefight with Taliban in Afghanistan
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One U.S. soldier was killed, two others were injured Tuesday in a firefight with Taliban militants in Afghan southern province of Uruzgan, U.S. military said.

"Coalition forces conducting offensive operations in Uruzgan province captured seven suspected Taliban fighters today in an engagement in which two U.S. service members were wounded and one U.S. service member was killed," U.S. military said in a press release.

"One Coalition vehicle was damaged by an improvised explosive device during the engagement, in the vicinity of Tarin Kowt. Coalition forces attacked the enemy with small-arms fire," it added.

The wounded service members, according to U.S. military, were evacuated for medical treatment at a nearby facility, and they are in stable condition.

About 19,000 strong U.S.-led Coalition troops stayed in Afghanistan since the collapse of Taliban in late 2001 for further cleanup operations.

Till now, more than 200 U.S. soldiers have been killed in and around Afghanistan since the Operation Enduring Freedom since 2001.

U.S. military just handed over Tuesday the command of Coalition in southwestern region of Afghanistan, including Kandahar, Uruzgan, Helmand and Zabul, to Canadian troops under the flag of NATO in Kandahar.

The four provinces, as the former stronghold of Taliban, have been the hotspot of Taliban militancy since the beginning of last year. About 6,000 NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops have been deployed in this region for peace keeping and anti-terrorism operations.

Source: Xinhua

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