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Deadly Grenade Attack on NATO Helicopter in Afghanistan

VOA News 12 October 2010

NATO says insurgents in Afghanistan fired a rocket-propelled grenade at a military helicopter, killing one person and wounding eight others.

The alliance says the Chinook helicopter had just landed at a base in Kunar province Tuesday when the attack took place. NATO says the aircraft was being off-loaded through the rear ramp, when insurgents fired the grenade into the cargo bay. The attack killed an Afghan interpreter and wounded seven NATO service members and an Afghan border police officer.

A man who claimed to be a Taliban spokesman said the movement's fighters were responsible for the attack.

NATO says 26 people were onboard the helicopter. The wounded were evacuated to a medical facility for treatment.

Separately, NATO says one of its service members was killed Tuesday in a roadside bombing in the south, where thousands of NATO-led troops are trying to dislodge Taliban militants from their tradition strongholds.

Meanwhile, the Afghan Interior Ministry says insurgents killed at least six Afghan civilians in eastern Paktika province. firing a rocket that hit the civilians' vehicle. The ministry says the dead include women and children.

The war in Afghanistan is now in its deadliest year so far. Around 152,000 foreign troops under U.S. and NATO command are fighting a Taliban insurgency that has steadily expanded since the 2001 U.S.-led invasion brought down their regime.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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