KABUL (Reuters) - Seven U.S. troops were killed in two separate roadside bomb attacks in southern Afghanistan on Monday, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said.
Violence in Afghanistan is at its worst since the Taliban were overthrown by U.S.-backed forces in late 2001, with soaring casualty rates among foreign and Afghan troops as well as among civilians who are caught up in the conflict.
Foreign military casualties have reached record levels this year, with more than 470 troops killed so far compared with 521 for all of 2009, according to website www.iCasualties.org and figures compiled by Reuters.
On Monday, ISAF said five of its troops were killed by a roadside bomb in one incident in southern Afghanistan, while two others died in a separate bomb attack, also in south.
An ISAF spokesman said all seven were Americans.
Earlier, a Reuters witness and residents reported seeing a U.S. military armored vehicle ablaze after it was hit by a roadside bomb in Kandahar city in the south.
It was not immediately clear whether the Kandahar incident was one of the bombings referred to by ISAF.
The latest troop casualties bring to 14 the number killed in the past three days, with ISAF reporting seven other troops killed on Saturday and Sunday.
About 2,050 foreign troops have been killed since the war began, more than 60 percent of them Americans. Of those, at least 259 have died in the past three months.
Reporting by Jonathon Burch; Editing by Paul Tait