Sun., September 30, 2012 5:30am (EDT)

'Suspected Insider Attack' Reported In Afghanistan
By NPR Staff and Wires
Updated: 2 years ago

A NATO service member died after a "suspected insider attack" in eastern Afghanistan Saturday, the NATO-led coalition there reports. A press release from the International Security Assistance Force says one of the force's civilian contractors and Afghan National Army members also died.

A string of insider attacks in one of the greatest threats to NATO's mission in the country, endangering a partnership key to training up Afghan security forces and withdrawing international troops.

Saturday's shooting took place at an Afghan army checkpoint just outside a joint U.S.-Afghan base in Wardak province, a provincial government spokesman told The Associated Press. At least two Afghan soldiers died, Shahidullah Shahid said.

"Initial reports indicate that a misunderstanding happened between Afghan army soldiers and American soldiers," he said. Shahid said investigators had been sent to the site to try to figure out what happened. It was not clear if the assailant was killed.

Afghan soldiers and policemen or militants in their uniforms have gunned down more than 50 foreign troops so far this year, eroding the trust between coalition forces and their Afghan partners. An equal number of Afghan policemen and soldiers also died in these attacks, giving them reason as well to be suspicious of possible infiltrators within their ranks.

The growing insider attacks have prompted Gen. John Allen to tighten security for U.S. troops in the country.

This report contains material from The Associated Press


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