CANBERRA, Australia (AP) -- Three Australian soldiers were killed and another two wounded in Afghanistan by a man in an Afghan army uniform, Australian officials said Thursday.
Veterans Affairs Minister Warren Snowdon told the Australian Broadcasting Corp. that the soldiers were killed late Wednesday night in a "green-on-blue incident" -- attacks in which supposed Afghan colleagues or allies turn on international forces.
"It's a very dreadful tragedy," Snowdon said. "My sympathy goes to the families of those brave men who have lost their lives."
Snowdon said he had no further details. The Australian Defense Force said earlier Thursday it would release more information after the families of the soldiers were notified.
NATO said in a statement Wednesday that the attack happened at a base in southern Afghanistan. "Green-on-blue" attacks have been rising in recent years. Last year, four Australian soldiers were killed by Afghan troops.
Thirty-six Australian soldiers have been killed in the more-than-decade-long Afghanistan war. Australia has 1,550 troops in Afghanistan and makes the largest military contribution of any country outside NATO.