Two American service members were killed in Afghanistan on Monday in an apparent insider attack, according to NATO’s Resolute Support mission.

The U.S. official reported that an Afghan soldier killed the two Americans in southern Afghanistan, according to Fox News.

No further information about the circumstances of their deaths was immediately available.

The names of the service members killed in action are being withheld pending next of kin notifications.

With their deaths, 12 American service members have now been killed in Afghanistan this year, nearly equal to the number 13 for all of 2018.

The recent killings come after eight rounds of U.S. led peace talks with the Taliban in Qatar to wind down the U.S. war.

On Monday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo commented that President Trump directed him to reduce U.S. troops in Afghanistan by the 2020 election.

“That’s my directive from the President of the United States. He’s been unambiguous: End the endless wars. Drawdown. Reduce,” Pompeo said in Washington, D.C. “It’s not only my expectation. It would be job enhancing.”

In previous interviews, Pompeo has said NATO forces and other U.S. allies would be reducing their footprint in Afghanistan as well if peace talks are successful with the Taliban.

Categories: U.S.