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NATO disputed the Taliban claim

"We do not know why it started but there is no indication that a suicide bomber was involved and there are no reports that someone managed to get into the base to do this," the NATO-led force said in a statement. The Taliban has claimed responsibility for previous conflicts between NATO service members and members of the Afghan military. CNN could not independently verify the group's claims. The Taliban said the man was once a pilot in an Afghan regime in the late 1980s and early 1990s. "Since the current Afghan air forces have no planes so, he was just going to Kabul airport to show up and earn his salary for a long time," Mujahid told CNN. The man "was holding the rank of colonel at the time and he had an AK-47 with him. After his bullets were finished, then he was shot to death by armed forces," Mujahid told CNN. There was confusion about the death toll. The NATO-led force initially said six service members were killed. It raised that toll to nine but backed away temporarily before saying again that the shooting killed nine people -- eight international service members and a civilian contractor. The Pentagon confirmed that all were Americans. Violence between Afghan forces and NATO troops is a matter of extreme concern for NATO officials, and it is growing in frequency. There have been 36 NATO deaths in the past two years attributed to attacks by people perceived to be Afghan soldiers or police. Officials fear that the increasing frequency of the attacks could undermine trust between NATO troops and the Afghans they are working hard to prepare so they can eventually take over security in the country. The Taliban's claim that the Afghan gunman was their recruit follows a now familiar pattern of the insurgency stating that attacks are theirs, even though NATO later suggests the gunman was acting out of personal motivation.

US to move 4,700 Marines from Japan to Guam: reports

Tokyo and Washington have agreed to move 4,700 Marines from the Japanese island of Okinawa to Guam in a bid to revive a stalled plan for the realignment of US forces in Japan, according to reports. The two countries in 2006 agreed to the transfer of around 8,000 Marines from Okinawa to the US territory of Guam and the relocation of an air base on Okinawa but the move has been delayed as Tokyo struggles to convince Okinawans to accept the deal. The US Defense Department is now considering shifting the remaining 3,300 Marines to elsewhere in the Pacific, such as Hawaii, Australia and the Philippines, Kyodo News reported on Sunday, citing unnamed diplomatic sources. Senior Japanese and US foreign and defence officials will meet in Washington on Monday, with the two governments expected to announce details of the transfer on February 13, Kyodo and the Asahi Shimbun daily said. Tokyo has struggled to convince Okinawans to accept the plan to relocate the Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, part of the realignment package. Many Okinawans, angry at having for decades shouldered the burden of hosting more than half of the 50,000 US troops stationed in Japan, oppose the plan which would relocate the US base to another part of the island. They say another part of Japan should take the base, instead of Henoko on the east coast of Okinawa, where Tokyo and Washington have agreed to build a giant runway-on-stilts in the sea. The move to transfer Marines to Guam may compromise Tokyo's position because Japanese government officials had used it as leverage to convince Okinawa to accept the base relocation, the Asahi said. The new development in the realignment programme may possibly end up leaving the airstrip where it is, in a crowded urban area of the island near dozens of schools and hospitals, the Asahi said.