Rogue Afghan soldier kills two British troops in southern AfghanistanMarch 26th, 2012 - 10:54 pm ICT by BNO News
LASHKAR GAH, Afghanistan (BNO NEWS) — An Afghan soldier opened fire at the entrance to a coalition base in southern Afghanistan on Monday, killing two British service members before he was shot dead by other coalition soldiers, officials said.
Major Ian Lawrence, a spokesman for Task Force Helmand, said two British service members were killed when an Afghan National Army soldier opened fire at the Main Operating Base in Lashkar Gah, located in Helmand province. The soldiers were serving as part of Task Force Helmand.
“Sadly, I must report that a Royal Marine and a soldier from the Adjutant General’s Corps were shot and killed by an Afghan National Army soldier at the main entrance to Lashkar Gah Main Operating Base,” said Lawrence. The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said the Afghan soldier who opened fire was killed when coalition forces returned fire.
Lawrence said the families of the service members have been informed and have asked for a 24-hour period of grace before other details are released. “The thoughts and condolences of everyone serving in the Task Force are with their families and friends,” he said.
The motive behind the attack was not immediately known.
On Wednesday, 24-year-old British soldier Captain Rupert William Michael Bowers was killed when he was struck by an improvised explosive device (IED) blast in the Mirmandab region of Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand province. He was working alongside an Afghan security forces’ patrol.
Monday’s deaths raise the number of coalition troops killed in Afghanistan so far this year to 90, according to official figures. Six British soldiers were killed earlier this month when a roadside bomb struck an armored vehicle in Helmand province, making it the war’s worst single loss of British life in one incident due to enemy action.
There are currently more than 130,000 ISAF troops in Afghanistan, including some 90,000 U.S. troops and more than 9,500 British soldiers. U.S. President Barack Obama previously ordered a drawdown of 23,000 U.S. troops later this year, and foreign combat troops are due to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014.
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Tags: adjutant general, armored vehicle, army soldier, bno, british soldier, coalition troops, enemy action, explosive device, helmand, international security assistance, isaf, lashkar gah, michael bowers, nahr, national army, roadside bomb, saraj, service members, southern afghanistan, troops in afghanistan