American soldier killed in Kandahar suicide bombing after Panetta's visit


US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta talks with Army Maj. Gen. Robert Abrams, (R) and Command Sgt. Maj. Edd Watson, (L) during a visit to Kandahar Airfield on December 13, 2013 Kandahar, Afghanistan. Secretary Panetta is meeting with Afghan president Hamid Karzai and top Afghan officials as the the U.S. look towards a decision on troop numbers once the U.S. led coalition ends in late 2014.



A suicide bomber killed one US soldier and two Afghan soldiers in an attack on Thursday outside an air base in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

ABC News reported that the bombing happened just hours after US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta had departed from the area, citing Afghan officials.

"Insurgents detonated a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device," said Pentagon Press Secretary George Little, in a statement.

Reuters said a US official had confirmed that one American soldier had died in the attack, although there was no indication that Panetta was the target of the attack.

Three American troops were also wounded in the bombing, according to Reuters. ABC News said eleven Afghan civilians were wounded.

Fox News said Panetta confirmed the bombing, saying a suicide car bomb killed one American soldier, two Afghan civilians and wounded three others.

Taliban spokesman Qari Jusuf Ahmedi claimed responsibility for the attack in an email, said Fox News.

According to the spokesman for the provincial governor, Javeed Faisal, the attack took place just after nightfall on Thursday.


This is a breaking news update. Please check back for more information.