PARIS — French President Francois Hollande said Saturday that France would begin its troop withdrawal from Afghanistan next month and complete it by the end of the year.
Speaking after the death of four French soldiers in a Taliban attack, he said France would pay a “national homage” to the men.
A Taliban suicide bomber disguised as a woman and wearing a burqa blew himself up in a market in eastern Afghanistan Saturday, killing four French troops, officials said.
The French forces were responding to a report of a bomb planted under a bridge in the main market area of Kapisa province’s Nijrab district when the bomber walked up to them and detonated his explosives, said Qais Qadri, a spokesman for the provincial government.
Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the attack in an email.
France’s defense ministry confirmed the nationality of the dead and said another five French troops were wounded in blast. The ministry said they were on an operation supporting the Afghan army but did not provide details. — Agencies