NATO-chartered helicopter crashes in Afghanistan
Monday, 25 August 2008

REUTERS, KABUL- A NATO-chartered helicopter crashed on Sunday in Afghanistan's eastern province of Kunar near the border with Pakistan, causing one death, a spokesman for the alliance said.

The civilian helicopter crashed soon after taking off from a military base in an area of the rugged province, the spokesman said, ruling out any hostile action.
 
He had no details about the type of the helicopter, number of people on board or identity of the casualties.
 
NATO in a statement said the helicopter was an Mi-8 supply helicopter, contracted by the alliance's International Security Assistance Forces.
 
It was forced to make an emergency landing shortly after takeoff from an ISAF base, the statement said, but did not say what caused the problem.
 
"One person on board the aircraft died and three were wounded during the incident," it added without elaborating on the nationality of the casualties.
 
Kunar is part of the main bastion for Taliban Islamists who lead the insurgency against the Afghan government and foreign troops backing it.
 
A spokesman for the Taliban said the group had shot down the helicopter. There was no immediate way to verify either side's accounts.
 
The militants have shot down a number of aircraft since 2001 when U.S.-led troops overthrew the Taliban's government, but many crashes have been reported due to technical failure.

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