Small Wars Journal

Mattis Reacts to Deadly Attack in Afghanistan; Taliban Says it Targeted Top U.S. Commander

Mattis Reacts to Deadly Attack in Afghanistan; Taliban Says it Targeted Top U.S. Commander by Robert Burns – Associated Press

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Friday the killing of a powerful police chief in southern Afghanistan just days before national elections is unlikely to fundamentally weaken the security situation.

Mattis commented on the attack in Kandahar during a break in meetings at an Asian security conference in Singapore.

Mattis called the death of Abdul Raziq a “tragic loss of a patriot.” But he said he believes the Afghan security forces have matured to the point where they can continue fighting the Taliban without him.

"We remain absolutely committed to an Afghan-led Afghan reconciliation," he said. "Right now, we're going toward the election and we will continue to defend the Afghan people."

He said he had not spoken to the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Scott Miller, since the attack. Miller was present during the shooting but uninjured.

The Taliban have claimed responsibility for the assault, saying they targeted Miller…

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