KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - Insurgents attacked a convoy of Afghan and international troops on Friday in eastern Afghanistan, sparking a gunbattle that left about 30 militants dead, NATO said.
The joint Afghan-international force called for air support during the firefight in Shinwar district of Nangarhar province, the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan said. No other information was disclosed and it is unclear whether any Afghan or coalition forces were killed or wounded.
NATO forces in Afghanistan have concentrated on Taliban strongholds in southern Afghanistan in the past several years, but more recently have shifted their focus to the east along the border with Pakistan.
In the south, a roadside bomb killed NATO service member in Kandahar province, the same region where the U.S.-led alliance repelled a coordinated Taliban attack on a U.S.-run civilian and military base a day earlier, NATO said without providing further details.
The death raises to 480 the number of coalition forces killed in Afghanistan so far this year.
Earlier, the U.S.-led alliance said its troops, in tandem with Afghan police, repulsed on Thursday a Taliban attack on a camp in Kandahar that is home to NATO troops, including Americans, and a provincial reconstruction team.
NATO said one Afghan interpreter was killed in the attack, while one American civilian contractor and two Afghan security guards were wounded. Five NATO service members also were lightly wounded, the alliance said.
The Taliban launched the assault from a compound across from the camp, firing rocket-propelled grenades, NATO said.
Two car bombs went off as Afghan police were clearing the compound, NATO said, but no one was hurt in the blast. The buildings had been rigged with explosives, and NATO said its forces fired Hellfire missiles at the compound, killing all four attackers.
Kandahar, and much of the south, had long been seen as a Taliban stronghold, but Afghan and coalition forces have made significant gains in the area and the insurgents have since shifted their operations further east and to some northern provinces.
NATO said the presence of car bombs at the site indicated the insurgents had a plan, which they were unable to execute, and that it had expected the Taliban to launch such an attack before the onset of winter, when the violence and attacks tend to abate.
In other incidents across the country, a civilian car struck a roadside bomb early Friday in Nangarhar province's Khogyani district, killing two men, a woman and a child, said district chief Mohammad Hassan.
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