U.S. service member among more than 50 killed in Afghanistan attacks

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By Masoud Popalzai, Barbara Starr and Joshua Berlinger

KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) — More than 50 people — including 27 students at a police academy and one U.S. service member — were killed in three separate attacks in Afghanistan on Friday, according to U.S. and Afghan officials.

The American was killed when a NATO coalition base in the capital city, Kabul, was attacked, a defense official told CNN. Another official told CNN’s Barbara Starr that nearly 20 people of varying nationalities were wounded.

Separately, U.S. Army Col. Brian Triebus said in a statement that eight Afghan civilian contractors and four insurgents were also killed in that incident. Triebus also said a coalition service member was killed, but he did not give the nationality of that person.

The attack on the coalition base, Camp Integrity, took place at 10:15 p.m., beginning with an explosion from a suspected suicide bomber followed by insurgents with small arms. The base houses U.S. and coalition troops that help train Afghan forces.

There are approximately 9,800 U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said the group was responsible for the attack on the NATO base and for a suicide bombing at that took place at the National Police Academy earlier in the day.

The suicide bomber ignited his explosives at the police academy’s front gate at around 7 p.m. local time, according to Ebadullah Karimi, a spokesman for the Kabul Police Chief. That’s where students had queued to enter the training facility, said an Afghan police official in the police hospital who didn’t want to be named.

Authorities said 27 students were killed and 26 people were wounded in that attack.

The incidents at Camp Integrity and the National Police Academy came hours after another explosion in Kabul.

At around 1 a.m. local time, a truck detonated on a main road, killing 15 people and wounding 240, said Sayed Zafar Hashemi, a deputy spokesman for President Ashraf Ghani.

The ensuing explosion destroyed residential areas and businesses, Police Chief Abdul Rahman Rahimi said.

Among those injured were 47 women and 30 children, Hashemi said.

Authorities were investigating the truck blast. There were no claims of responsibility late Friday.

CNN’s Kevin Bohn and Michael Martinez contributed to this report.

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