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Coalition Forces in Afghanistan See Enemy Attacks Increase

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, March 31, 2003 – Since the beginning of action in Iraq, there has been an increase in attacks against coalition forces in Afghanistan, Combined Joint Task Force- 180 officials said.

"It's small, but there has been an increase," said command spokesman Army Col. Roger King.

Two Americans were killed March 29 when their five-vehicle convoy ran into an ambush. King said that contrary to reports, the ambushers were in prepared positions off the side of the road. They fired small arms, machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades at the coalition vehicles.

The two dead are Staff Sgt. Jacob L. Frazier of the 169th Air Support Operations Squadron, 182nd Airlift Wing, Peoria, Ill.; and Sgt. Orlando Morales of A Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group, Fort Bragg, N.C.

A third American was wounded in the attack and has been evacuated to Landstuhl Army Hospital in Germany. He is in stable condition. Service members held a memorial service in Kandahar for their comrades.

Incidents continue to occur. The coalition fire base near Shkin was hit by 12 mortar rounds March 30. Soldiers called in close-air support. An AV-8B dropped a laser-guided bomb and a preliminary assessment shows that two enemy were killed. There were no coalition casualties.

Also March 30, two rockets were fired at the coalition base near Gardez and a single rocket landed northwest of the Kabul Military Training Area. There was no damage to either base and no casualties.

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