Two Britons among dead in Kabul attack

October 30th, 2011 - 10:39 pm ICT by BNO News  

KABUL (BNO NEWS) — Two Britons were among the seventeen people who were killed on Saturday morning when a suicide car bomber attacked a coalition bus in the Afghan capital of Kabul, the British government confirmed on Sunday.

The attack happened when a suicide bomber rammed his vehicle into an armored bus belonging to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), killing 17 people. Among the casualties were five ISAF service members, eight ISAF civilian employees, one Afghan police officer and three Afghan civilians.

Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Jim Gregory earlier said a number of Americans were among the ISAF casualties, while Canadian Armed Forces spokesman Lt. Col. Christian Lemay confirmed one of the ISAF service members was a Canadian mentor trainer.

A spokesperson for the UK Foreign Office on Sunday said two of the ISAF civilians were British nationals. “Next of kin have been informed,” the spokesperson said. “Our thoughts are with the families of all who died: ISAF personnel and contractors; Afghan forces and civilians.”

The spokesperson added: “Consular staff in Kabul are in close touch with the employer of the deceased. We stand ready to provide any consular assistance needed to their families.”

Also on Sunday, Afghan President Hamid Karzai expressed his heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the families and relatives of those killed in the attack. The U.S. Embassy said Karzai had personally delivered his condolences to U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and U.S. General John Allen.

“Afghan people are grieved by the NATO loss of lives and share the pain and sorrow with the families and friends of the troops killed,” Karzai told the U.S. officials during a meeting.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid previously claimed responsibility for the deadly attack and identified the suicide bomber as Mujahid Abd-ur-Raman. “[He], with indomitable courage and true spirit of faith, slammed his vehicle stuffed with 700 [kilograms (1,543 pounds) of] explosives at the vehicle carrying the US-NATO trainers who used to train the local puppets,” he said on Saturday.

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