A Soviet soldier in Kabul has been shot by a sniper in the first incident of violent opposition to the Soviet presence in Afghanistan witnessed by western reporters.
Witnesses said Soviet soldiers in a jeep had stopped at a street vendor's stand in the western part of the city Friday when two rifle shots rang out.
A photographer who drove by seconds after the shots were fired said the jeep's window had been shattered and a wounded soldier lay inside, although it was not possible to tell how badly he had been hurt.
A military ambulance arrived on the scene within minutes of the shooting and an estimated 40 Soviet troops searched the area for the sniper, although no arrests were reported. The shots appeared to have come from a cluster of huts on a hillside opposite the vendor's stand.
There have been numerous reports of Afghan attacks on Soviet troops and civilians but few such reports have been confirmed.
As many as 100,000 Soviet troops moved into Afghanistan in late December shortly before the coup that toppled president Hafizullah Amin from power and installed pro-Moscow President Babrak Karmal. The troops have supported Afghan forces fighting Moslem rebels in the mountainous countryside.
In another development, three ABC television crew members were expelled from Afghanistan yesterday following their arrest two days before while filming in an area west of Kabul.
The three included producer Jacques Grenier of Quebec, soundman Richard Hull of Vancouver and cameraman Barry Fox of Belfast.
American reporters were expelled from Afghanistan eight days ago, but non-American newsmen continued to work in the country for some U.S. news organizations.
The ABC crew was confined to a Kabul hotel after the Thursday arrests. The three men were ordered to leave the country yesterday and boarded a flight to New Delhi.
Meanwhile, the Afghan government newspaper, New Kabul Times, reported that followers of ousted president Amin had smothered Amin's own predecessor with a cushion. The alleged victim, Nur Mohammed Taraki, was overthrown last September. Amin had issued a press release at the time attributing Taraki's sudden death to natural causes.