Two US service members—both Special Forces—are dead and six service members are wounded after an attack in Afghanistan on Saturday, CNN reports. An Afghan soldier was also killed and three wounded in the surprise gunfight. It began after someone in an Afghan uniform opened fire at the Sherzad district center in eastern Afghanistan, where US and Afghan troops had been building relationships with Afghan officials. "Current reports indicate an individual in an Afghan uniform opened fire on the combined US and Afghan force with a machine gun," says Colonel Sonny Leggett, per Reuters. "We are still collecting information and the cause or motive behind the attack is unknown at this time."
A provincial governor says the assailant might have been an infiltrator or even someone who opened fire by mistake. "It was not a clash between forces," he tells Al Jazeera. "We are investigating." The Taliban has said nothing, but a record number of attacks were conducted in Afghanistan last year by the Taliban and other insurgent groups, including an infiltrator attack that killed nine Afghan soldiers at an Afghan base in December. In all, nearly 2,400 US troops have died in combat in Afghanistan. Names of the two US service members killed Saturday are being withheld until after next of kin are notified. It comes as Washington continues negotiating with the Taliban in an effort to pull out troops and end the longest military conflict in US history. (Read more Afghanistan stories.)