German troops in Afghanistan have held a memorial service for three of their number killed by the Taliban, just hours before another German unit killed six allied Afghan soldiers by mistake.
Germany has been giving an official reaction to the incident which is the subject of a NATO investigation.
The dead German soldiers had been on a minesweeping convoy that came under grenade and gun attack from at least 100 Taliban fighters in the north of the country.
Speaking in Bonn, the defence minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg said: “I want to offer my condolences again to the Afghan people and the families of the Afgfhan soldiers who were killed on Friday.”
The Taliban attack on the German convoy happened in the Chahar Dara district southwest of Kunduz city. Shortly afterwards, a German armoured patrol opened up on two unmarked cars approaching them that failed to stop.
Germany is the third largest NATO contributor to the allied force in Afghanistan, mostly deployed in and around Kunduz, where Taliban attacks have increased over the past year.
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