November 18, 2019, 1:08

2 US service members killed in Afghanistan

2 US service members killed in Afghanistan

Two U.S. service members were killed in Afghanistan on Wednesday, the NATO mission in the country said in a statement.

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“In accordance with U.S. Department of Defense policy, the names of the service members killed in action are being withheld until 24 hours after notification of next of kin is complete,” Resolute Support said on Wednesday.

(MORE: As Trump, negotiators work toward peace, attacks highlight violent realities)

The U.S. provided no details surrounding the service members’ deaths, including the location of the incident within Afghanistan.

Master Sgt. Alejandro Licea/1st Armored Division/Department of Defense

A Soldier watches as a UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopter prepares to land during an advise and assistance mission in southeastern Afghanistan, Aug. 4, 2019.

There have now been 14 U.S. troops killed in combat-related incidents in the country this year, the highest number recorded by the Defense Department since 2014. Last month, two 82nd Airborne Division Paratroopers, Spc. Michael Nance and Pfc. Brandon Kreischer, were killed while conducting operations in Kandahar Province.

(MORE: 2 US soldiers killed in Afghanistan as Pompeo vows troop reduction by 2020)

The death of the two service members on Wednesday comes as America’s chief negotiator with the Taliban resumed talks with representatives of the terrorist group in Qatar on Tuesday, hoping to finalize agreements with the Taliban and the Afghan government.

While the U.S. hopes to keep some military presence in Afghanistan, the Taliban have pushed for a total withdrawal. Finalizing those details — how many U.S. troops in what role must leave by when — has been at the heart of U.S. talks with the Taliban.

Meanwhile, deadly bombings have continued to rock the country. Over the weekend, the Islamic State group in Afghanistan claimed responsibility for an attack on a wedding party in Kabul that killed 63 people.


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