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Afghanistan: US general injured in Kandahar attack that killed provisional police chief

A U.S. army general was among those injured in a Taliban attack on top U.S. and Afghan security chiefs inside a highly secure compound last week in Kandahar province, a military spokesperson confirmed.

U.S. Army Brigadier General Jeffrey Smiley, in charge of NATO’s military advisory mission in Afghanistan, suffered at least one gunshot wound in Thursday’s attack, the Washington Post reported on Sunday, October 22.

A gunman wearing an Afghan security forces uniform opened fire on a group including powerful Afghan police chief General Abdul Raziq and General Scott Miller – the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan – as they ended a meeting in the southern city of Kandahar.

Raziq, an anti-Taliban strongman and key U.S. ally who was credited with keeping a lid on the insurgency in the south, was killed along with Kandahar’s provincial intelligence chief and an Afghan journalist.

Miller later said he believed he was not a target.

Colonel David Butler, spokesperson for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, initially told The Defense Post that three unidentified people were injured: one U.S. service member, one U.S. civilian and a coalition contractor.

Later, in tweets discussing U.S. media reports that named Smiley, he confirmed he was wounded.

That the Taliban could mount a deadly insider assault in such a secure location rattled Afghanistan, a country long used to high-profile targeted killings and violence.

It was also an unusual incident for the U.S. military, whose generals seldom face attack and are rarely wounded.

Kandahar officials delayed parliamentary election voting in the province for once week in response to the attack.

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