German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in northern Afghanistan Saturday on a previously unannounced trip.
A statement from her office said she is in Kunduz province, where German soldiers are based. She is accompanied by German Defense Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg.
Germany has some 4,700 soldiers serving with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.
The German army announced Saturday that a 21-year-old soldier died after being shot at a checkpoint in what was said to be an accident.