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Three German Soldiers Wounded in Blast in Northern Afghanistan


An attack on a German patrol in northern Afghanistan has wounded three German soldiers.

German military officials say the patrol was near Kunduz province when a roadside bomb detonated near one of the armored vehicles Thursday. Two of the soldiers suffered serious injuries.

Germany has been under pressure to contribute more troops to the NATO-led effort in Afghanistan. Canadian Defense Minister Peter Mackay called on Germany to take a larger role in the south, where Taliban militants are more active, in an interview published in the German magazine Der Spiegel.

Germany has more than 3,000 troops in Afghanistan - most of them stationed in the more stable north.

Twenty-six German soldiers have been killed since Germany first deployed troops to Afghanistan more than five years ago.

On Wednesday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy told British lawmakers France plans to bolster its military presence in Afghanistan, saying the Taliban must be defeated no matter how much it costs.

Afghan, NATO and U.S. troops are fighting a resurgent Taliban movement and other rebels who have strongholds in the southern and eastern parts of the country. Last year was the bloodiest in Afghanistan since the Taliban was ousted from power by a U.S.-led invasion in 2001.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP

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