Two US troops killed fighting ISIS in Afghanistan

In a statement the group vowed to ramp up operations against Afghan and foreign forces "their military and intelligence infrastructure".

Apparently foreshadowing the spring offensive, a Taliban attack earlier this week on an army base in northern Afghanistan was among the most devastating ever in the country, killing more than 140 Afghan soldiers.

Lavrov reiterated that Moscow's contacts with the Taliban are meant only to encourage insurgents to join peace and reconciliation talks with the Afghan government.

The U.S. has been aiding the Afghan Security Forces in their battle against the IS in Afghanistan and estimates that the extremist group has about 800 fighters in the country.

Two US service members were killed during an operation against Islamic State militants in eastern Afghanistan overnight on Wednesday, US officials said on Thursday, as President Donald Trump's administration looks to craft a strategy in the war-torn country. The casualty toll was much more than the losses Afghan forces suffered in the battlefield in the past several weeks, prompting the defense minister and the military chief to step down.

The assault last Friday, in which militants dressed in Afghan army uniforms and with valid passes to the installation slaughtered at least 135 young recruits, is believed to be the deadliest by the Taliban on an Afghan military target.

Last Friday's Taleban assault on the military base fuelled fears over insider attacks - when Afghan soldiers and police turn their guns on their colleagues or on worldwide troops - have been a major problem during the war. In an emailed statement the Taliban also claimed the district, while Badakhshan's deputy governor Mohammad Bidar said fighting between Afghan Security Forces and the Taliban was still intense in the area.


The Taliban on Friday announced the start of their yearly rebel offensive in Afghanistan.

Beginning in 2016, Afghan security forces backed by USA military advisers have launched a major offensive against ISIS, with Nicholson saying that the terror group has lost about half of its fighters and been ejected from two-thirds of its territory.

The report said that as of March this year, 210 children had been killed - up 17 percent from the same period last year. They are largely conducting a training, advise and assist mission aimed at supporting Afghan forces.

The Islamic State's offshoot in Afghanistan, known as the Sunni jihadist group's so-called Khorasan Province, is suspected of carrying out several attacks on minority Shia Muslim targets.

The country is still reeling from last week's attack on a military base. The bombing, the first time the GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast - dubbed the "Mother of All Bombs" - had been used in combat, triggered global shockwaves.

The United States is sending an additional 1,500 Army soldiers to Afghanistan this summer to support Operation Freedom's Sentinel, the current USA campaign in the country.

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