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CENTCOM Issues Statement on Soldier Deaths in Pakistan

Just out from U.S. Central Command about the three soldiers who died yesterday in a Pakistan bombing. According to the statement — reprinted in full after the jump — the soldiers were part of a civil affairs training team that had been invited into Pakistan by the government and were in the Northwest Frontier Province “to attend an inauguration ceremony at a girls school that had recently been renovated with U.S. humanitarian assistance money.”

Three U.S. military members died of wounds suffered from an improvised explosive device today in the Lower Dir District of Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier Province, and two U.S. service members were wounded.

The service members were assigned to the Office of the Defense Representative, Pakistan to conduct civil affairs-related training at the invitation of the Government of Pakistan. They were in Lower Dir to attend an inauguration ceremony at a girls school that had recently been renovated with U.S. humanitarian assistance money.

“This attack demonstrates the terrorists’ lack of respect for life, and their willingness to use violence against women and children as a means for advancing their malign vision,” said Rear Adm. Hal Pittman, Director of Communication at U.S. Central Command. “The U.S. personnel were in Pakistan at the request of the Government of Pakistan to assist the Pakistanis with training in support of our long-standing partnership with Pakistan, and this horrific attack will not dissuade that partnership. We extend our sincere condolences to the families and loved ones of those innocent individuals who were killed or injured.”

The names of the deceased are being withheld pending notification of next of kin and release by the Department of Defense. The names of the service members are announced through the U.S. Department of Defense Official Website at http://www.defense.gov. The announcements are made on the Website no earlier than 24 hours after notification of the service members’ primary next of kin.

The wounded service members were evacuated for treatment.

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