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Coalition troop deaths in Afghanistan surpass Iraq

(CNN) -- For the second month in a row, U.S. and allied troop deaths in the Afghan war have surpassed those in Iraq, according to official figures tallied by CNN.

In June, 46 foreign troops died in Afghanistan and 31 troops died in Iraq. In May, 23 foreign troops died in Afghanistan and 21 died in Iraq.

A Pentagon report issued last week about Afghanistan said security in many areas of the country is regarded as "fragile" and Taliban militants have regrouped into a "resilient insurgency" after the Taliban was toppled from power in 2001.

June was the deadliest month for foreign troops in Afghanistan since the conflict there began in 2001. Twenty-eight Americans, 13 Britons, two Canadians, one Pole, one Romanian, and one Hungarian died in Afghanistan. The latest deaths were three American troops who died in a vehicle rollover while on patrol in Kandahar province.

Violence in Iraq has dropped. Among the reasons that have been cited are inroads made by the "surge" military offensive; Iraq's military operations against militants; the growth of the Awakening Councils, opposing al Qaeda in Iraq, among Sunni Arabs; efforts at political compromise; and the cessation of hostilities by mainstream members of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's Mehdi Army.

While foreign troop deaths in Iraq were slightly higher in June than in May, the numbers are dramatically lower than last year when there were 131 foreign troop deaths in May and 108 in June.

In June, 29 American troops, a Georgian soldier and an Azerbaijani soldier were killed in Iraq. In May, 21 U.S. troops and two Georgian soldiers were killed.

The trends are similar among civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The United Nations said recently that civilian deaths in Afghanistan have gone sharply upward in the past year, largely because of stepped-up Taliban attacks and an insurgent shift toward tactics like roadside bombings, U.N. officials said Sunday.

Afghan civilian deaths in the first six months of 2008 jumped 60 percent, from 430 in the first six months of 2007 to 698 this year, John Holmes, the U.N. undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, said.

Government data in Iraq issued on Monday said the number of deaths among civilians, soldiers and insurgents continued to decline in June.

CNN's Joe Sterling and Mohammed Tawfeeq contributed to this report.

© 2008 Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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