BBC News & International Herald Tribune & EuroNews & The Frontier Post – 2008-11-09 17:18:54
Spanish Troops Die in Afghanistan
(November 9, 2008) — Two Spanish soldiers have been killed and another seriously hurt in a suicide bomb attack in western Afghanistan, Spain’s defence ministry has said.
The Spanish unit involved had been providing support to Afghan security forces in Shindand district, in the south of Herat province.
The latest fatalities brings to 25 the number of Spanish troops killed while serving with NATO-led forces there. Spain has about 700 troops deployed in Afghanistan, mostly in Herat.
A Taleban suicide bomber rammed an explosives-laden vehicle into a NATO military convoy, the authorities said. “Two Spanish soldiers were killed and another was critically wounded,” a Spanish defence ministry official said.
Taleban spokesman Yousuf Ahmadi told the AFP news agency that 15 Afghan and foreign soldiers were killed or wounded.
© BBC MMVIII
Spanish Troops Killed in Afghan Attack
International Herald Tribune
KABUL (November 9, 2008) — Two Spanish soldiers were killed and four wounded in a suicide bombing in western Afghanistan, Afghan officials said Sunday.
An Afghan civilian was wounded as well, struck by the blast as his motorcycle was passing close by, the officials said.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the explosion in a telephone call. The Taliban spokesman, Qari Yousuf Ahmadi, said the suicide attack was made on military convoy as it passed near the village of Azizabad, in Shindand district.
Ahmadi said the attack was in retaliation for a raid on the village by US Special Operations forces in August that left 90 civilians dead, according to United Nations and Afghan government investigations. A US military investigation put the number of civilian dead at 33.
Spanish Soldiers Killed in Afghan Suicide Attack
(November 9, 2008) — Two Spanish soldiers have died and four others have been wounded in a suicide attack south of the city of Herat in western Afghanistan. The victims were hit by a van loaded with explosives which rammed into a joint Spanish-Afghan convoy returning from a training exercise.
Spain’s Defence Minister, Carme Chacon, said the soldiers belonged to the Spanish army’s BRILAT light airborne infantry division and had been posted in the area for several months.
Spain has more than 700 military personnel based in Afghanistan, most of them in Herat province. The attack brings to 25 the number of Spanish troops killed in the fight against Taliban insurgents. The total number of foreign military deaths in Afghanistan since the Taliban government was toppled in late 2001 is more than 1,000.
Two Spanish Soldiers Killed in Afghan Suicide Attack
The Frontier Post
HERAT (November 9, 2008) — A Taliban suicide attacker rammed a bomb-filled minivan into a NATO military convoy in Afghanistan, killing two Spanish soliders and critically wounding another, authorities said on Sunday.
The attack was in western Herat province’s Shindand district where in August, Kabul and the UN alleged that air strikes on Taliban rebels there had killed dozens of civilians. The US military admitted later 33 had died.
The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) convoy had been driving through the district with Afghan security forces when it was struck by the attacker’s vehicle, Afghan police said. One soldier had died on the spot and another later succumbed to his injuries, western Afghanistan police commander General Ikramudin Yawar said. Three others were wounded, he said.
Yawar had identified the troops as Italian but they were later confirmed to be Spanish.
“Two Spanish soldiers were killed and another was critically wounded in an attack south of Herat,” the Spanish defence ministry said in Madrid. Defence Minister Carme Chacon was to speak to the media about the incident later Sunday, an official said. The NATO-led force — which includes 2,350 Italian soldiers and 780 Spaniards — confirmed there had been a suicide attack but was unable to give details.
A spokesman for the insurgent Taliban, who were in government between 1996 and 2001, said the attack was carried out on behalf of his organisation. Fifteen Afghan and foreign soldiers were killed and wounded, said the spokesman, Yousuf Ahmadi. The extremists often exaggerate the number of casualties. Taliban insurgents have been behind scores of suicide attacks in Afghanistan, most of them targeted at Afghan and international security forces.
Sunday’s attack took place about two kilometres (one mile) from the village of Azizabad, where Afghan and UN investigations said 90 civilians were killed in air strikes on August 22. The US military initially said five to seven civilians were killed along with 30-35 Taliban. It reviewed its investigation under pressure, and said 33 civilians and 22 militants were killed.
The conflict in Afghanistan has steadily worsened with this year seeing the most insurgent attacks since the Taliban were removed from power for sheltering Al-Qaeda. Around 256 international soldiers have lost their lives in the country this year, according to the icasualties.org website that monitors the US-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Two US soldiers and two Afghans were killed in a suicide attack in the northern province of Baghlan on October 27. Two German soldiers, along with five Afghan children, were killed in the far-northern province of Kunduz a week earlier.
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