An Afghan teenager killed an American soldier in eastern Afghanistan by stabbing him in the neck while he played with a group of local children, officials revealed today. Sgt. Michael Cable, 26, was guarding Afghan and US officials meeting in a province near the border with Pakistan when the stabbing occurred last Wednesday, two senior US officials said. The attacker is thought to be about 16 years old.
The attack occurred after the soldiers had secured the area for the meeting, a swearing-in ceremony of Afghan Local Police. The soldier was playing with a group of children outside when the attacker came from behind and stabbed him in the neck with a large knife, said a local official, adding that the young man then escaped to nearby Pakistan. A Taliban spokesman says the youth was acting independently at the time, but has since joined the militant movement. At least 14 US soldiers died in March, compared with four in the previous two months, according to an AP tally. (Read more Afghanistan stories.)