Three US soldiers were killed and three wounded by a bomb in Afghanistan on Tuesday, Nato said, with the attack claimed by the Taliban as the US tries to ratchet up efforts to engage the militants in peace talks.
Nato’s Resolute Support mission would not immediately release any details about the identity of the soldiers, whose deaths took the number of American service personnel to die in the war-torn country this year to 12.
A Nato statement said they had been killed when an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated near Ghazni city in central Afghanistan.
An American contractor was also wounded, it said, adding that the four injured in the blast were receiving medical care.
The casualties come just days after another US soldier was killed in Afghanistan’s Nimroz province on Saturday.
An initial review showed the soldier was “likely accidentally shot by our Afghan partner force”, a Nato statement said on Tuesday, adding that the “tragic” incident occurred as they engaged in a battle with Al Qaeda militants.
“There are no indications he was shot intentionally,” the statement added, naming the soldier as Sgt Jasso without giving a first name.
General Scott Miller, the top US and Nato commander in Afghanistan, said Jasso was killed “defending our nation, fighting Al Qaeda alongside our Afghan partners”.
Jasso’s death follows a spate of so-called “insider attacks” that have rattled foreign troops tasked with training and assisting Afghanistan’s military.
More than 2,200 American soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan since the 2001 US-led invasion that toppled the Taliban regime from power.
Washington is trying to find a way out of the conflict more than 17 years since it began.