17 dead in ANA helicopter crash in Zabul
QALAT (Pajhwok): At least 17 persons were killed when a helicopter of Afghan National Army (ANA) crashed in the Naw Bahar district of southern Zabul province, an official said Thursday.
Pamiri, the spokesman of the 205th Thunder Military Corps, in Zabul province told Pajhwok Afghan News the helicopter came down in a mountainous area between Nawbahar and Shinki districts at around 11: 00 am.
He said reinforcement had been dispatched to the area. However, an official in southern Kandahar province wishing anonymity confirmed that 12 ANA soldiers and five technical personnel including pilots were killed in the incident.
He said that two ANA helicopters were on way to Naw Bahar district but one of them crashed due to technical problems.
“The pilot of the second helicopter told me that the pilot of the crashed helicopter had told him about emergency landing due to a technical fault, but the helicopter crashed down within few minutes,” the official said.
A statement from the Presidential Palace said that President Ashraf Ghani expressed grief over the loss of lives in the helicopter crash. “The president offered condolences to the bereaved families and prayed to Almighty to rest the departed soul in eternal peace.”
The helicopters were boarded with senior ANA officials and were traveling to Naw Bahar district, the official said.
A Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed hitting the helicopter in which 25 onboard had been killed.
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