Three Czech soldiers were killed in a Taliban suicide attack in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, according to U.S. and Czech officials.
The soldiers, who were deployed with NATO’s Operation Resolute Support training mission, died when a suicide bomber detonated near a combined patrol of international and Afghan forces north of Bagram air base, according to military officials.
An American Resolute Support member and two Afghan National Army soldiers were also injured in the blast. (RELATED: US Service Member Killed In Apparent Insider Attack In Afghanistan)
“My thoughts and prayers, along with those of all the 41 Resolute Support nations, are with the families and friends of the fallen and wounded service members, and our injured Afghan brothers and their families,” U.S. Army Gen. John Nicholson, the commander of Resolute Support, said in a statement. “Their sacrifice on behalf of the Afghan people and our coalition will endure in both our hearts and history, and further strengthen our resolve.”
The victims have not yet been identified by Czech or Resolute Support authorities, pending notification to next of kin. Czech Interior Minister Jan Hamáček confirmed the deaths in a statement on Twitter.
“Czech Republic has suffered a terrible loss,” he wrote. “Our three soldiers were killed in a suicide attack while on a foot patrol with Afghan forces in Parwan province. My thoughts remain with the families and friends of our fallen [soldiers].”
The Czech Republic recently approved a plan to keep 390 soldiers assigned to Resolute Support in Afghanistan through 2020, up from the current 230, the Associated Press reported.
Resolute Support is a “non-combat” mission to train, advise and assist the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, according to NATO. The current force strength of the mission is about 16,000 international personnel.
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