Three American service members and a US contractor were killed when their convoy hit a roadside bomb on Monday near the main US base in Afghanistan, the AP reports. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. The US and NATO Resolute Support mission said in a statement that the four Americans were killed near the Bagram Air Base, north of Kabul, while three others were wounded in the explosion. The wounded were evacuated and are receiving medical care, the statement said. It added that in accordance with US Department of Defense policy, the names of service members killed in action are being withheld until after the notification of next of kin.
In their claim of responsibility, the Taliban said they launched the attack and that one of their suicide bombers detonated his explosives-laden vehicle near the NATO base. The conflicting accounts could not be immediately reconciled. On Tuesday, local officials said at least five Afghan civilians were wounded in the commotion after the attack on the American convoy. Four were passers-by and the fifth was a driver of a car going down the road, said Abdul Raqib Kohistani, the Bagram district police chief. Monday's US fatalities bring to seven the number of US soldiers killed so far this year in Afghanistan. The Taliban have continued to carry out daily attacks on Afghan security forces despite holding several rounds of peace talks with the United States in recent months. (Read more Afghanistan stories.)