Wednesday, 19 May 2010

NATO Paying High Price for Afghanistan Occupation: More Attacks, More Casualties


19/05/2010 As a reminder that Afghanistan is still disobedient to the occupation forces, Taliban militants on Wednesday have waged an attack on the biggest NATO base in the country sparking gun battles, a day after eight occupation soldiers were killed in the deadliest attack on the occupation forces since January.

The Wednesday attack took place when Taliban militants armed with rockets, guns and grenades attacked Bagram airbase, 60 kilometers north of Kabul, causing gun battles that killed seven fighters and wounded seven occupation soldiers.

"Seven insurgents have been killed during an ongoing attack on Bagram that included rockets, small arms and grenades," the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement.
Major Virginia McCabe, a press officer at Bagram, said: "Seven ISAF soldiers were wounded. Our soldiers' response was pretty quick."

A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, told AFP by telephone from an undisclosed location, "four suicide bombers activated their explosive belts and fighting is continuing at the base."

Also on Wednesday, Four Danish occupation soldiers were wounded when an explosive device blew up passing an armored vehicle in Helmand province, the Danish military said.
Around 750 Danish occupation soldiers are deployed in Afghanistan. Most are in Helmand province under British command.

A day before, on Tuesday, and as the Afghan President Hamid Karzai prepared to trumpet the success of his last Washington trip, an explosion in Kabul provided a grim assurance that the Afghan capital remains vulnerable to Taliban who are causing NATO to pay high price for its occupation to Afghanistan.

Eight occupation soldiers were killed on Tuesday, in the deadliest day for NATO in five months. A suicide bomber detonated his vehicle near a US convoy in the Afghan capital, killing six troops, five Americans and a Canadian.
Two other American occupation soldiers were killed in separate attacks in the south.

The Kabul blast was the first major attack in the Afghan capital since January and it followed a Taliban announcement of a spring offensive even as the U.S. gears up for a major push to restore order in the turbulent south.

A Jordanian double agent, on January, blow himself up in an US base killing seven CIA agents.

A top NATO commander has expressed concern on Monday over the rising number of foreign casualties in Afghanistan, amid an upsurge of attacks against the US-led forces.

The war in Afghanistan has claimed the lives of about 1,100 US occupation troops and over 600 coalition soldiers since 2001, Admiral James Stavridis said.
So far this year 210 occupation soldiers were killed in Afghanistan, compared to 119 troops killed last year from January till mid-May.
Over all 520 occupation troops were killed in the country in 2009, according to an AFP tally based on

Stavridis also told reporters that the alliance now faces a shortfall of hundreds of troops to train Afghan security forces through the next year.
NATO countries have so far agreed to send more trainers, but the program is 450 short of the 5,200 people needed this year.

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