7 US troops killed in Afghanistan fighting

08:25, August 30, 2010      

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Seven American troops have died in weekend attacks in Afghanistan's embattled southern and eastern regions.

Two servicemen died in bombings Sunday in southern Afghanistan, while two others were killed in a bomb attack in the south Saturday, and three in fighting in the east the same day, NATO said. Their identities and other details were being withheld until relatives could be notified.

The latest deaths bring to 42 the number of American forces who have died this month in Afghanistan after July's high of 66. A total of 62 international forces have died in the country this month, including seven British troops.

Fighting is intensifying with the addition of 30,000 U.S. troops to bring the total number of international forces in Afghanistan to 140,000 — 100,000 of them American. Most of those new troops have been assigned to the southern insurgent strongholds of Helmand and Kanahar provinces where major battles are fought almost daily as part of a gathering drive to push out the Taliban.

Meanwhile Sunday, two suicide bombers attempted to climb over the back wall of a compound housing the governor of the far western province of Farah, but were spotted by guards and shot, provincial police Chief Mohammad Faqir Askir said. The men's vests exploded, although it wasn't clear if they detonated themselves or because they were hit by bullets.

NATO said eight insurgents were killed in joint Afghan-NATO operations Saturday night in the province of Paktiya, including a Taliban commander, Naman, accused of coordinating roadside bomb attacks.

Just to the south in Khost province, U.S. and Afghan troops raised the death toll among insurgents to more than 30 in simultaneous attacks Saturday by about 50 fighters on Forward Operating Base Salerno and nearby Camp Chapman, where seven CIA employees died in a suicide attack in December.

NATO has stepped up efforts to provide security to allow an election whose outcome will be generally accepted as credible, hoping that will help stabilize the nation's fractious politics that are helping fuel the violence.

Yet frictions have continued to mar the relationship between the government of President Hamid Karzai and its international partners, largely over the knotty question of endemic official corruption.

On Saturday, the government criticized U.S. media reports that numerous Afghan officials had allegedly received payments from the CIA — including one who reportedly took a bribe to block a wide-ranging probe into graft.

A presidential office statement did not address or deny any specific allegations, but called the reports an insult to the government and an attempt to defame people within it.

Source: Agencies

(Editor:张心意)

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