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US service member killed in Afghanistan, Pentagon says

A U.S. service member was killed in action in Afghanistan on Saturday, Pentagon officials say.

The service member’s identity was being withheld pending notification of the next of kin, Stars and Stripes reported.

Details about the incident were not immediately available. The death raises the U.S. combat death toll in Afghanistan to nine for this year.

Earlier this month, Army National Guard Maj. Brent Taylor, a Utah mayor on leave of absence, was killed during an insider attack in Kabul. Another service member was injured in the same attack.

More than 2,400 U.S. military personnel have been killed in America’s 17-year-long conflict in Afghanistan.

About 14,000 U.S. service members are currently stationed in Afghanistan, with the primary duty of training and aiding Afghan forces who are battling the Taliban, Reuters reported.

During a Nov. 17 forum in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the top U.S. military officer said the Taliban “are not losing” in Afghanistan.

“They are not losing right now, I think that is fair to say,” said Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. “We used the term stalemate a year ago and, relatively speaking, it has not changed much.”

Meanwhile, Afghanistan has seen more than 28,000 police officers and soldiers killed since 2015, the New York Times reported. At least 242 security force members were killed between Nov. 9-15, President Ashraf Ghani said.

“Since 2015, still much regrettable, but the entire loss of American forces in Afghanistan is 58 Americans. In the same period, 28,529 of our security forces have lost their lives,” Ghani told the Times.

On Friday, a bombing at an Afghan army base killed at least 27 soldiers and wounded dozens of others, the New York Times reported. There was no immediate claim of responsibility, the report said.

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