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US soldier killed in Nangarhar blast

AT-KABUL: A United States service member was killed in a bomb blast in eastern province of Nangarhar, US official confirmed Wednesday.

“The service member was killed conducting operations with Afghan forces against Daesh terrorists when the patrol triggered an improvised explosive device,” the Pentagon said in a statement.

According to Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook, the soldier, whose name and personal details are yet to be released, was killed in a “combat situation” while on foot patrol.

Cook said an investigation into the matter was underway, adding that he was not aware of any other casualties in the incident.

“On behalf of all of U.S. Forces – Afghanistan, we are heartbroken by this loss and we extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the service member,” said General John Nicholson, commander of US forces in Afghanistan.

“Despite this tragic event, we remain committed to defeating the terrorists of the Islamic State, Khorasan Province and helping our Afghan partners defends their nation.”

The statement said Afghanistan was still suffering from insecurity and violence years after the United States and its allies invaded the country in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The military invasion removed the Taliban from power, but their militancy continues to this day.

Last October, US President Barack Obama announced to keep 9,800 US troops in Afghanistan through 2016 and 5,500 in 2017, reneging on his promise to end the war there and bring home most American forces from the Asian country before he leaves office at the end of 2016, the statement added.

Over the past several months, Taliban militants have intensified their pressure with numerous offensives on other key provinces, including Kunduz and Helmand.

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