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IED Kills U.S. Service Member on Patrol in Helmand, Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan — A U.S. service member was killed after their patrol triggered an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan Tuesday, officials said.

Another American service member and six Afghan soldiers were wounded in the blast, near the city of Lashkar Gar, in Helmand Province, according to a U.S. military statement.

The Department of Defense said it was withholding the identity of the dead person until their family had been informed.

The dead service member was part of a foot patrol that was clearing IEDs, senior defense officials told NBC News. In the past day or so, 100 US soldiers were deployed to Lashkar Gah to support the local Afghan police but the victim was not part of that new deployment.

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"Our deepest sympathies go out to the families and friends of those involved," said General John W. Nicholson, commander of U.S. and NATO forces in the country. "We are deeply saddened by this loss, but remain committed to helping our Afghan partners provide a brighter future for themselves and their children."

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The patrol triggered an IED while U.S. forces were conducting "train, advise, assist activities" with their Afghan counterparts, according to the statement by U.S. Forces in Afghanistan. One service member died of their injuries.

"An investigation is being conducted to determine the exact circumstances of the event," the statement added.