PENTAGON - A U.S. service member was killed by a bomb blast north of Mosul, a military official tells VOA.
The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the service member was assisting members of the Kurdish peshmerga as part of the U.S. advise-and-assist mission to retake Mosul from Islamic State fighters.
Another U.S. military official told VOA the service member was killed “loosely in the vicinity of Mosul,” without elaborating.
Defense and military officials say he was in a vehicle when an improvised explosive device blew up. The troop was evacuated from the area and died of wounds sustained in the blast.
U.S. Central Command, which overseas American operations in the Middle East, announced the death in a statement Thursday.
“On October 20, 2016, a U.S. service member died from wounds sustained in an improvised explosive device blast in northern Iraq,” it read.
The announcement of the death comes a day after Maj. Gen. Gary Volesky, the U.S. ground commander in Iraq, said U.S. advisers accompanying Iraqi Security Forces, Iraqi Counterterrorism commandos and Kurdish peshmerga were operating behind the forward line of troops. A U.S. military official told VOA the service member was “back from the forward line of contact” when the bomb went off.