Aussie soldier killed in S Afghanistan

A soldier serving with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan (file photo)

An Australian soldier serving with the US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) has been killed and two other injured in a militant attack in southern Afghanistan, Press TV reports.

On Sunday, Australian Defense Force Chief Lt. Gen. David Hurley confirmed the death of the soldier, which occurred on Saturday.

The incident brings the number of Australian military personnel killed in Afghanistan to 40.

Moreover, two Australian soldiers were also wounded in the incident, one of whom has sustained serious injuries and is flown to Kandahar to be hospitalized.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard described the death as a reminder that the Australian mission and its dangers were ongoing.

Australia has 1,550 stationed troops in Afghanistan.

According to official figures released by the website icasualties.org, the overall number of the ISAF soldiers killed so far this year in Afghanistan stands at 91, out of which 69 have been American.

A total of 402 US-led soldiers lost their lives in Afghanistan in 2012. However, 2010 remains the deadliest year for US-led military casualties, with a death toll of 711.

Attacks on foreign troops are expected to rise as Taliban militants have announced the beginning of their spring offensive across Afghanistan.

In late April, the Taliban announced that they would use Å“every possible tactic” to inflict casualties on Afghan and US-led forces.

The announcement has prompted the Afghan authorities to beef up security in major cities across the country, including the capital city of Kabul.

The United States and its allies invaded Afghanistan as part of Washingtonâ„¢s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban from power, but the country is still gripped by insecurity.

ASH/HJL/HMV

This article originally appeared on: Press TV