CANBERRA, Australia — Two Australian soldiers were killed by an improvised explosive device in
southern Afghanistan , the worst fatalities the country has suffered in a single day during military deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, an official said Tuesday.
It was the first multiple fatalities Australia has suffered in a day in either Afghanistan or Iraq, Acting Defense Force Chief Lt. Gen. David Hurley told reporters in the capital Canberra. The deaths bring Australia's casualty toll in Afghanistan to 13 since 2001.
Australia is the largest contributor outside NATO to the Afghanistan campaign, with 1,550 troops. They are however under under NATO command.