updated 5/1/2009 12:23:33 PM ET 2009-05-01T16:23:33

Three Americans and two other foreign soldiers were killed when insurgents opened fire on an outpost in eastern Afghanistan with small arms and rocket propelled grenades, the U.S. military said Friday.

The military did not give the nationalities of the other two soldiers or any further details about the location of the incident.

Earlier Friday, Afghanistan's Defense Ministry said three Afghan soldiers were killed in overnight fighting with insurgents in eastern Kunar province.

Ministry spokesman Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi said the troops were manning a checkpoint that insurgents attacked late Thursday. He said he had reports of heavy casualties on the militant side, but did not have figures.

Also Friday, the U.S. military said that international and Afghan forces killed 15 militants in southern Afghanistan.

Gunmen attacked the troops' convoy as they traveled to a village Friday to talk to elders about security, the military said in a statement. The troops killed one militant in the initial clash and another 14 as they pursued insurgents who were firing on them from a nearby hillside, it said.

No Afghan army or international forces were wounded and no civilian casualties were reported, the statement said.

The Taliban have vowed to increase ambushes and other attacks as an additional 21,000 U.S. troops flood into Afghanistan this summer in response to already-rising militant attacks. Many of the new forces are going to the south, where the Taliban have effective control over large regions.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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