Taliban kill Canadian, French troops
Taliban insurgents killed a French special forces officer in Afghanistan on Saturday and a Canadian officer was in critical condition after being attacked with an axe during a meeting with tribal elders.

Canadian Lieutenant Trevor Greene from British Columbia was with a civilian-military team meeting tribal elders in Kandahar provinceĀ‘s Shinkai district when he was attacked, Canadian military spokesman Lieutenant Mark MacIntyre said. Canadian soldiers opened fire and killed the assailant, whose identity was not known, the spokesman said, adding that a grenade was also thrown at the meeting but caused no casualties.

Greene was in critical condition and would be evacuated to a U.S. military hospital at Landstuhl in Germany, he said. "Lieutenant Greene was savagely attacked from behind," he said. "He was hit in the head with an axe."

U.S. spokesman Colonel Jim Yonts said two Taliban guerrillas were killed in the clash in which the French officer died elsewhere in Kandahar. The French defense ministry said he was a naval officer with special forces.

The Canadian casualty was the latest suffered by their 2,300-strong contingent in Kandahar this week. On Friday, five Canadian soldiers were hurt, one seriously, in a suspected suicide car bombing that followed a wave of such attacks in recent months that have killed dozens of people. At least 10 Canadians have died in the country since 2001.
Posted by: Dan Darling 2006-03-05