ISAF: Five Service Members Killed in Afghanistan

Posted August 11th, 2011 at 4:55 am (UTC-5)
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The international coalition fighting in Afghanistan says five service members have been killed in a roadside bomb attack in the southern part of the country.

The International Security Assistance Force says the soldiers were killed by an improvised explosive device on Thursday, but gave no other details.

The attack comes less than a week after 30 American and eight Afghan troops were killed when their CH-47 helicopter crashed after being shot at by Taliban insurgents.

On Wednesday, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, General John Allen, said a precision air strike by coalition forces killed several Taliban militants, including the insurgent who fired the fatal shot at the helicopter.

Taliban officials on Thursday denied that the militant responsible for the crash was killed, saying the fighter is “busy conducting jihad elsewhere.”

The crash last Saturday killed 17 Navy SEALS, five Navy special operations troops, three air force troops, and five Army members. Previous reports said that 22 SEALS were killed.

It was the worst loss of life for the United States in a single incident during the decade-long war in Afghanistan.

General Allen said a probe is under way to review the circumstances surrounding the crash. He noted that while a rocket-propelled grenade was at least partly to blame, small arms fire also may have played a role.

In Washington Wednesday, the Pentagon said U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has decided to release the names of the fallen American soldiers, despite objections from officers at U.S. Special Operations Command. Pentagon spokesman Colonel David Lapan said he expected the names to be published by Thursday.