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US,  Pakistan Troops Killed in Meeting on Afghan Border


A firefight along the Pakistan Afghan border has left at least one U.S. and one Pakistani soldier dead and several others wounded. Pakistani officials are blaming the incident on unknown militants. From Islamabad, VOA Correspondent Benjamin Sand reports.

There are conflicting reports on the deadly gun battle.

The incident occurred inside Pakistani territory where U.S., Pakistani and Afghan military officials met to discuss a recent border clash between the South Asian neighbors.

Afghanistan's Defense Ministry initially said a Pakistani officer opened fire at the meeting.

Pakistani military spokesman Major General Waheed Arshad sharply rejected the Afghan version of events. He says unknown militants attacked the meeting as the Afghan and American groups were leaving the compound.

"When the convoys were leaving they were fired upon by some miscreants. I am very sure of what I am saying, there is no involvement of Pakistan military in firing on these people," he said.

He says one Pakistani and one American soldier were killed in the attack. NATO officials have confirmed the incident, but provided no further details.

Islamabad says it has already begun a high-level inquiry into the attack and the entire area has been sealed off.

General Arshad says it remains unclear which side of the border the alleged gunmen used to stage their attack.

Pakistan and Afghan soldiers exchanged gunfire in the same area on Sunday. Afghan officials say at least 13 people were killed on their side of the border.

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