US service member killed in Afghanistan, second in less than a week

An American and an Afghan service member were killed and several other Afghan forces wounded during combat operations in eastern Afghanistan Thursday, the U.S. military has announced.

The identity and military branch of the U.S. casualty has not been released pending notification of next of kin.

The combat death marks the U.S. combat death in less than a week in Afghanistan, where U.S. troops are supporting local forces battling the Taliban.

On Saturday, Army Cpl. Joseph Maciel was killed in a suspected “insider attack” that also wounded two U.S. troops at Tarin Kowt Airfield in Uruzgan Province.

This is the fourth American combat death in Afghanistan this year. So far in 2018, the Pentagon has announced the deaths of 18 U.S. service members, including five under non-combat circumstances.

Nine American troops have died in Iraq, and one each in Syria, Somalia, Kosovo, Djibouti and Germany.

At the NATO summit in Brussels, President Trump was asked by a reporter from an Afghan news services when the war in Afghanistan was going to end because “people are fed up.”

“I agree with that. I very much agree. It’s been going on for a long time,” Trump replied, but added, “We’ve made a lot of progress in Afghanistan, I will say.”

Trump said that immediately following his news conference he would be meeting with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani presumably to discuss the NATO-led Resolute Support mission.

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