Conjectures Loom After Two US Soldiers Die in an Afghanistan Shootout

In a world of increasing diplomatic crisis and conflicts, Afghanistan appeared to escape the anarchy pretty soon. However, the glim of hope was recently interrupted by the blazing attack of a machine gun. On Saturday, Afghani and American soldiers became a target to an unforeseen shootout, during joint operations in eastern Afghanistan.

Officials highlighted that the attack in Nangarhar Province has resulted in the deaths on both sides, where at least two American soldiers have reportedly been killed. Three Afghan officials also highlighted that two to six Afghan soldiers also died in the attack.

Colonel Sonny Leggett, spokesman for the United States military in Afghanistan, informed that “an individual in an Afghan uniform opened fire on the combined US and Afghan force with a machine gun,” as indicated by current reports.

In an early Sunday statement, he also stated that six other American servicemen were injured and were receiving medical care at the US facility. The names of the service members killed were being kept confidential, until their families were notified.

The American Special Forces have been indulged in a joint operation in Nangarhar Province, assisting the Afghan Army and commandos in exempting the area from the Taliban, which along with the Islamic State branch in Afghanistan had maintained a foothold in Nangarhar.

The joint operation led to a dismissal of the Taliban from around the main highway and was continuing to clear the villages in Sherzad district, where the shootout took place.

According to the statement from the deputy head of the Nangarhar provincial council, Ajmal Omar, the Afghan commandos were accompanying US forces to visit an Afghan army base for an operation, when one of the commandos opened fire with a machine gun after initial greetings. “There was fear of a second shooter also, so they disarmed everyone at night,” he said.

An investigation into the attack was underway, where the intentions behind it were not clear. It was not known if the firefight was the act of Taliban infiltrators, as other details of the incident were also insufficient.
In the past, insider attacks by Afghan forces on Americans were quite frequent. Known as “green on blue”, these attacks have reduced in the recent years, as America took more of a supporting role and the Afghan forces led the fight.

The Saturday shootout came during a delicate period of war, when the negotiators from the US and the Taliban have been indulged in weeks of talks to reach a peace deal. The talks were previously interrupted in September, when the US President Donald Trump called them off, following a car-bombing that killed an American soldier in Kabul.

After months, the Taliban peace talks were recently resumed to finalize a deal that could end America’s longest war. However, it is believed that the insurgent group’s involvement in Saturday’s shooting could complicate the negotiations, which have reportedly reached a promising stage.

The United States currently maintains a presence of 10,000 troops in Afghanistan, but President Trump has been striving to end the 19-year-old war and to bring back their soldiers. However, the Taliban peace talks – the only way out for America – have come under yet another challenge, when a positive solution was in sight.

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