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Bomb rips through NATO-Afghan army base

A suicide bomber has struck at a NATO-Afghan army base in Afghanistan's eastern region. It is the latest in a spate of terrorist attacks directly targeting Afghan troops and NATO military presence.

At least 10 Afghan soldiers were wounded after a suicide truck bomb exploded at a joint NATO-Afghan army base in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday, according to a government official.

"The attacker detonated his explosives-filled car outside the compound in Zormat district, Paktiya province," said provincial spokesman Rohullah Samoon.

"According to our reports, several Afghan soldiers were killed or injured, but no ISAF troops were killed or wounded." confirmed a spokeswoman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), Amy Hession.

The Taliban promptly claimed responsibility for the bombing.

"A group of mujahedin using a car bomb and suicide vests attacked the compound, detonating themselves and opening fire on the soldiers, which left several dead and injured among the Afghan and foreign soldiers," Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed said.

The Taliban targets the military

The attack is the latest in a series of recent terrorist attacks directly aimed at military forces. On October 1, a suicide bomber took aim at an Afghan-NATO foot patrol in the eastern city of Khost, resulting in at least 20 fatalities, including three foreign soldiers.

Last month, the Taliban attacked ISAF's Camp Bastion in Helmand province, killing two US marine soldiers.

Wednesday's incident also comes at a time when the competency of Afghanistan's army-in-training is being closely scrutinized. Many observers have identified lack of motivation and indiscipline as serious barriers for the Afghan army as they prepare for NATOs departure of troops in 2014.

sej/cg (dpa, AFP)