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American general killed in Kabul attack
Condemning the terrorist attack that killed a US general in Kabul, the White House on Tuesday called the a painful reminder of the service and sacrifice made by Americans in Afghanistan.
A man wearing an Afghan National Army (ANA) uniform opened fire on International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops in Kabul on Tuesday noon, causing multiple casualties, an official said.
President Barack Obama was briefed about the assault, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference. Later, Obama spoke to US and NATO commander in Gen Joseph Dunford about the shooting.
Earnest said an investigation was underway to determine the exact nature of the attack and who were behind it. There was a detailed protocol in place at The Marshal Fahim National Defense University in Kabul, he said, adding necessary changes would be made if required after the investigation was completed.
At the same time, the spokesman noted a considerable decline in the number of attacks on US forces in Afghanistan. But the latest incident reminded of the services and sacrifices rendered by American forces in Afghanistan, he said.
The Pentagon said the slain general was "one of the highest-ranking" military officers killed since 9/11. One security official confided to Pajhwok Afghan News the attack was triggered by a verbal clash.
"We can confirm one ISAF service member was killed. This incident is under investigation. " a statement from the NATO-led force said.
Ministry of Defence spokesman Gen. Zahir Azimi tweeted that a terrorist in an ANA uniform fired at the personnel at 12.00 noon. Some of Afghan and foreign forces were wounded, he said, condemning the shooting.
The attacker was killed in return fire from Afghan soldiers, according to Azimi, who hoped for the swift recovery of the injured.
In London, the Ministry of Defence said it was investigating a report of the Afghan soldier opening fire at a UK-run military academy near Kabul. An Afghan commander was reportedly injured.
First cadets started training at the academy, modelled on the UK's academy at Sandhurst, in October. It was reconstructed after the 2001 invasion.
Fifteen international soldiers have been killed this year in the so-called insider attacks, compared with a total of 62 in 2013. A total of 133 coalition soldiers have been killed so far this year.
Also on Tuesday, an Afghan guard traded fire with ISAF soldiers near the governor's office in Gardez, the capital of southeastern Paktia province. Provincial police chief Gen. Zalmai Oryakhel said the guard was killed in the gunfight.
[Source: By Lalit J Kha & Khawaja Basir Ahmad, Pajhwok Afghan News, Kabul and Washington, 05Aug14]
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