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Deadly Attack Kills Five Americans in Afghanistan

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A deadly car bomb blast has killed five Americans in Afghanistan's Zabul province.

Reports say three US soldiers and a young woman diplomat were killed during the attack. An American civilian also died in a separate incident.

The US diplomat Anne Smedinghoff, 25 years old, and other Americans were in a convoy of vehicles when the blast occurred.

The American officials and their Afghan colleagues were reportedly on their way to donate books to students in a school in the Kazul's capital, when they were hit by an IED attack.

Karzai and U.S. President Barack Obama at a meeting at the NATO summit in November 2010. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

US mourns the death of the Americans

In his statement in Washington DC, US Secretary of State John Kerry says the US is grieving over the loss of one exceptional young Foreign Service officer Anne Smedinghoff , along with service members, a Department of Defense civilian, and Afghan civilians.

He reports four other State Department colleagues suffered injuries, one critically.

He recalls that just last week in Kabul, he met the fallen officer when she was selected to support him during his visit to Afghanistan.

"She was everything a Foreign Service officer should be: smart, capable, eager to serve, and deeply committed to our country and the difference she was making for the Afghan people." - Secretary Kerry

Ms. Smedinghoff tragically gave her young life working to give young Afghans the opportunity to have a better future, he added.

US honors the fallen US troops and young diplomat

Secretary Kerry says the United States honors the U.S. troops and Department of Defense civilian who lost their lives, and the Afghan civilians who were killed as they worked to improve the nation they love.

He says he spoke with the fallen Foreign Service officer's mother and father and offered what little comfort he can for their immeasurable loss.

"As a father of two daughters, I can't imagine what her family is feeling today, or her friends and colleagues." - Secretary Kerry

Former U.S. President George W. Bush with Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul, Afghanistan, on March 1, 2006. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Secretary Kerry says he has been in close touch with Secretary Hagel, the White House, and our senior management team at the State Department, including Deputy Secretary Burns, Undersecretary Kennedy, and Ambassador Cunningham in Kabul.

They will keep in close contact as they learn more facts about this attack and the brave people who were killed and wounded, hesaid.

They are also in contact with the families of those injured, he added.

"Every day, we honor their courage and are grateful for their sacrifices, and today we do so with great sadness." - Secretary Kerry

Suicide Attack Kills USAID Officer in Afghanistan

In August 2012, a USAID officer was killed in a suicide bombing in Kunar Province in Afghanistan.

Reports say the suicide attack also killed Foreign Service Officer Ragaei Abdelfattah, three ISAF service members and an Afghan civilian, and injured a State Department Foreign Service officer.

The fallen Ragaei Abdelfattah was a former master planner for Prince George's County who had come from Egypt and worked with the United States.

Ragaei was so committed to US mission and to the people of Afghanistan that he volunteered to serve a second year.

Afghanistan Officially Designated as Major Non-NATO Ally of United States

In 2012, the US government announced that Afghanistan is officially designated as its major non-NATO ally.

The US government sees this alliance as a powerful symbol of its commitment to Afghanistan's future.

In December 2011, the United States withdrew 10,000 U.S. troops from Afghanistan.

July 2011 marked the beginning of a responsible transition that will see Afghan forces gradually taking the lead in securing their own country.

By 2014, the process of transition will be complete, and the Afghan people will be responsible for their own security.

The Afghan security forces move into the lead, the United States continues to reduce its military footprint. Its mission will change from combat to support. The remaining 23,000 "surge" troops in December 2009 will leave Afghanistan by the end of summer 2012.

The U.S. government has made significant progress towards their goals.

Reports say the U.S. government is redoubling its efforts to pursue a peaceful end to the conflict in the region.

The U.S. government has taken tangible steps to advance Afghan reconciliation and reintegration initiatives, including support to the Afghan High Peace Council and provincial police and reintegration councils.

Afghanistan Expected to Take Full Responsibility for Its Security By 2014

With the recent announcement that 34,000 US troops will withdraw in Afghanistan, the United States of America today announced US goal is for Afghans to take full responsibility for their security by 2014

For the past decade, tens of billions of dollars in security-related spending have fueled consumption and economic growth in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Central Asia.

Since last November 2012, seven provinces and municipalities have already begun transition.

US pledges for long-term military commitment

US is negotiating a Strategic Partnership agreement that signals its long-term civil-military commitment.

US knows the cost of neglecting Afghanistan as well. The US will continue to support the sovereign rights of the people of Afghanistan.

US and Afghanistan Partnership

Both nations have worked together to set forth a long-term political, diplomatic, and security partnership, and it entered into force just a few days ago.

The US government sees this alliance as a powerful symbol of its commitment to Afghanistan's future.

The United States also wants to continue to invest in doing what the Afghans believe they need.

The United States will continue to protect Afghanistan from any efforts by insurgents and outsiders to destabilize Afghanistan.

The US government has supported President Karzai in his effort to have an Afghan-owned, Afghan-led reconciliation process.

Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain english. Read more stories by Mina Fabulous. Contact Mina through NewsBlaze.

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