Photo by AFP/Getty Images.
A suicide bomber on a motorcycle killed three U.S. soldiers and at least seven other people on Wednesday in what had been a relatively peaceful area in northern Afghanistan.
The Associated Press reports that the bomber detonated his explosives shortly before noon at the gate of a park in the city Maimanah, located near the Turkmenistan border. His target was unclear but the casualties included four Afghan police officers. At least 20 other people were injured.
The Telegraph reports that the Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack, and identified the bomber as Mullah Abdul Ghafar.
Wednesday’s episode was the latest in a recent spike in violence against American troops and Afghan security forces as NATO preps to handover combat responsibility to local forces by the end of 2014. So far, more than 100 NATO forces have been killed in the country by militants this year.