(WASHINGTON) — President Obama has been briefed on the attack in Afghanistan that left an American general dead and 15 other soldiers wounded, press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at the White House Tuesday.
The attack at Camp Qargha, a military academy 11 miles west of Kabul, involved a gunman wearing an Afghan army uniform opening fire on Americans and other Afghans.
The Taliban has since claimed responsibility for the attack.
“While we have made tremendous progress in disrupting, dismantling and defeating al Qaeda operations and leadership in Afghanistan and progress in winding down U.S. involvement in that conflict, this shooting is of course a painful reminder of the service and sacrifice that our men and women in uniform make every day for this country,” Earnest said.
“The thoughts and prayers of those of us here at the White House are with the family of the general, are with the soldiers and the family of those who were injured in this attack,” he added.
A U.S. official described the shooting victim as a two star major general, the highest ranking official to be killed in the Afghanistan war. Eight of the 15 wounded are also said to be Americans.
Earnest noted there has been a recent decline in the casualty rate of American personnel in Afghanistan, but stressed that Tuesday’s incident serves as a reminder that U.S. servicemen and women are “facing significant risks to protect our country and to protect American citizens all around the globe.”
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Tom Kludt and Jeremy Diamond, CNN
Maeve Reston, CNN
Joshua Berlinger, CNN