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Afghan 'insider' attack claims at least two lives

NATO says one of its soldiers and a civilian contractor have been killed in an attack believed to involve an Afghan soldier. The attack comes a day after the US said joint operations with Afghan forces were resuming.

NATO said Saturday's attack, which occurred in eastern Afghanistan, also caused Afghan army casualties, but gave no details.

The NATO forces statement did not provide the nationalities of those killed.

If the attacker is confirmed to be an Afghan ally, the NATO death toll from so-called "green-on-blue" attacks would rise to at least 52 this year in 36 separate attacks. That represents about 15 percent of all coalition casualties in the war in Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) announced that it was scaling back joint operations with its Afghan partners following a dramatic rise in attacks by Afghan soldiers on their Western allies.

On Friday, the US announced, however, that the combined operations were resuming.

In a bid to curb such attacks, the coalition has increased internal security for its troops, and Afghanistan has instituted fresh vetting procedures for some security personnel. But such incidents continue to pose a problem for NATO, as it advises and trains Afghan forces in preparation for its scheduled pullout in 2014.

tj/ipj (dpa, Reuters, AFP)