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6 U.S. service members among 9 people killed in Afghanistan

By the CNN Wire Staff
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6 U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • 6 American troops die in south, east
  • 2 people die in strike on minibus
  • NATO convoys, base assaulted
  • Civilian dies in Kandahar bombing
RELATED TOPICS
  • Afghanistan
  • NATO

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Six U.S. service members were among nine people killed in Afghanistan on Saturday, the latest casualties in a bloody summer for coalition soldiers.

NATO's International Security Assistance Force said one service member died in an accidental explosion, one was slain in small-arms fire, and two died in bombings in eastern Afghanistan. Two others died in bombings in southern Afghanistan.

In recent weeks, death tolls have been high for U.S. service members. For example, seven soldiers died in three separate incidents on June 7.

June was the bloodiest month in the Afghan war for all international and American soldiers. The death toll for all international troops reached 102, including 60 Americans, and deaths have been mounting in July as well.

In the eastern province of Paktia, two people died when a bus was fired upon. Coalition forces were not present in the area, ISAF said.

In the southern city of Kandahar, a civilian was killed when a parked motorbike laden with explosives was remotely detonated, Ahmad Wali Karzai, head of Kandahar's provincial council, said. The explosion set two cars on fire, and the civilian was sitting inside one of the vehicles.

Bombs hit NATO convoys in the eastern province of Khost and the northern province of Kunduz. There were no casualties, ISAF said.

Insurgents attacked the front entrance of a NATO forward operating base in the southeastern province of Zabul, ISAF said. There was no immediate word on casualties.

An Australian soldier was killed in a bombing in Uruzgan province late Friday, the 17th service member from that nation to die in the conflict, Australia's Defense Ministry said.

The soldiers were part of a dismounted patrol conducting operations in Uruzgan's Chora Valley region when the blast occurred. Another soldier was injured.

Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, the chief of Australia Defense Force, mourned the loss of the soldier, Nathan Bewes, a 23-year-old private.

"This incident is a sad reminder of the dangers faced by our soldiers in Afghanistan on a daily basis. The threat posed by improvised explosive devices is ever present," Houston said.

In Helmand province, troops found 100 kilograms of opium and bomb-making material Friday night.

Afghan and international troops killed an armed man and detained several people during an operation targeting militants in Paktia province on Friday, the NATO-led command said.

CNN's Atia Abawi contributed to this report.