Taliban infiltrate Afghan army to target foreign troops

Cheryl Sanders
June 25, 2017

Seven US soldiers were injured on Saturday in an insider attack by an Afghan soldier who turned his weapon on his instructors and advisers.

Najib Danish, deputy spokesman for the Interior Ministry, confirmed the attack in Gardez, the provincial capital of Paktia Province.

Dillon C. Baldridge, 22 of Youngsville, North Carolina - were killed June 10 when an Afghan soldier opened fire on them in Peka Valley, located in Nangarhar province.

Seven US military service members were wounded.

An Afghan soldier opened fire inside the facility, a spokesman for the Afghan army's 209th Corps said. It's also suspected to be a so-called "green-on-blue" attack - when Afghan troops turn on their USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation counterparts.

The attack is the second to occur within the last week.

Taliban-led insurgency has been on the rampage since late April when the Taliban launched their annual rebel offensive and intensified attacks across the country.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack. "One Afghan soldier was killed and one was wounded in the incident".

Afghan policemen gather at the site of an attack Sunday in Gardez. The attack has caused injury to four other foreign soldiers.

The military coalition had earlier said that one Afghan soldier had been killed and another wounded in the incident. Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the armed group, said at the time that a Taliban loyalist had infiltrated the Afghan army "just to attack foreign forces". Araam said the soldiers returned fire and killed the attacker.

President Trump recently gave James Mattis, the secretary of defense, the authority to increase USA troop levels in the country - and "right now, this new troop request is being worked by the commander in Afghanistan, the National Security Council under H.R. McMaster and senior leaders at the Pentagon", NPR's Tom Bowman told All Things Considered.

Still, there have been several reports that the Trump administration may send another 5,000 troops to Afghanistan. USA troops accused their Afghan allies of "pervasive illicit drug use, massive thievery, personal instability, dishonesty, no integrity, incompetence, unsafe weapons handling, corrupt officers. high AWOL rates, bad morale, laziness (and) repulsive hygiene".

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