Wire: 7 US Troops Killed in Afghanistan
Off the Wire:
WASHINGTON, July 6, 2009 -- Newswire services this afternoon reported that seven American troops were killed throughout Afghanistan Monday, officials said.
The Associated Press reported that a suicide car bomber also blew himself up outside the gate of the main NATO base in the region, killing two civilians and wounding 14 other people.
A new tactical directive for coalition forces serving in Afghanistan was issued that re-emphasizes the importance of preventing civilian casualties.
The seven American deaths came as thousands of U.S. Marines continued with their major offensive against the Taliban in Helmand province, a southern militant stronghold and hub of the vast Afghan drugs trade. It is the biggest U.S. military operation since the ouster of the Taliban from power in 2001, AP said.
Four U.S. soldiers died when their vehicles struck a roadside bomb in Kunduz province in the north, said Navy Chief Petty Officer Brian Naranjo, a U.S. military spokesman. The dead were training Afghan forces, Naranjo said.
In the south, another explosion killed two more American troops, Naranjo said, without providing details of the exact location of the blast.
Another American soldier died of wounds sustained during a firefight Monday with militants in the east of the country, a U.S. military spokesman said, without providing other details.
A NATO helicopter made an emergency landing in the southern Zabul province, a spokesman for the military alliance said. There were casualties among those onboard but Lt. Commander Chris Hall did not have further details.
(Report from newswire sources.)
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