Nato troops among dead in Afghan blast

A suicide bombing in the eastern Afghan city of Khost has killed at least 14 people, three of them Nato soldiers, officials say, the BBC reports. Nato did not confirm the nationalities of the soldiers, but correspondents say US troops operate in the area. Taliban insurgents said they carried out the attack, which also killed four Afghan police.Witnesses said the attacker waited for troops to leave their vehicles before detonating the bomb. At least six civilians were also killed and 60 people were wounded in the attack. The bomber targeted a coalition convoy passing through a crowded part of Khost. He says American troops serve in the area – although an announcement on the nationality of the soldiers is still awaited. Khost, like other parts of eastern Afghanistan, has seen a dramatic rise in violence. In June, a suicide bomber killed 21 people including three US troops and a local interpreter in the city. The attack drove a motorcycle laden with explosions to a joint Nato-Afghan military checkpoint set up in a crowded bazaar.The Taliban-affiliated Haqqani network regularly mount large-scale attacks and suicide bombings in the area. Over the weekend, a shooting at a checkpoint in eastern Afghanistan took the US military’s death toll in the war past 2,000. Three US soldiers and contractor were killed in the attack in Wardak province on Saturday, along with three Afghan soldiers.Coalition spokesperson Major Adam Wojack would only confirm that three NATO service members and their translator were killed in a bombing in the east, without giving an exact location or the nationalities of the dead, Al Jazeera reports. The international military alliance usually waits for individual nations to announce details on deaths. It was not immediately clear if the translator was an Afghan citizen or a foreigner, Wojack said.The explosion came a day after NATO announced that a firefight between coalition troops and their Afghan allies killed an ISAF soldier, a civilian contractor and three Afghan army troops in circumstances that remained unclear.That incident was initially described as a suspected “insider attack”, but it was later suggested that either insurgent fire or a verbal argument between the troops led to the shooting.

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