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Afghan helicopter crash kills 9 Americans

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Smiles, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. Smiles

    Smiles JF-Expert Member

    Sep 21, 2010
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    Afghan helicopter crash kills 9 Americans

    Incident makes 2010 the deadliest year of the war for foreign troops

    A U.S. Apache attack helicopter takes off after refueling during a several-hour firefight against the Taliban in Afghanistan's Zhari district on August 20.

    KABUL, Afghanistan — A helicopter crash killed nine American troops in Afghanistan on Tuesday, NBC News reported.

    The incident made 2010 the deadliest year for foreign troops of the war, according to monitoring website iCasualties.org. The deaths take the toll so far this year to at least 529. Last year, 521 foreign troops were killed.

    The Taliban claimed to have shot down the helicopter in Zabul province but NATO said there were no reports of hostile fire.

    Citing U.S. officials, NBC News said that all of the victims were American and that the crash's cause remained under investigation.

    One member of NATO's International Security Assistance Force, an Afghan soldier and a U.S. civilian were wounded in the crash and were taken to hospital for treatment, ISAF said in a statement.

    Taliban spokesperson Qari Yousef told NBC News that the insurgent group had downed the chopper. However, the Taliban often claims responsibility for events which they have not been invoved in.
    NBC News reported that the incident put the U.S. death toll in Afghanistan this year at 351.

    The incident occurred in northwestern Zabul, according to a NATO official. The official spoke to the AP condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to disclose the location of the crash.
    'A lot of smoke in the sky'

    Mohammad Jan Rasoolyar, a spokesman for the provincial governor in Zabul, told the AP the helicopter went down in Daychopan district.

    "I was sitting taking my tea," said Nakeemullah, 20, who works transporting livestock in the area. "I heard noise and I went outside to see what happened.

    "I saw a lot of smoke in the sky," said Nakeemullah, who uses only one name. "It was far away for me, but I could see that it was a helicopter and it went down on the backside of the mountain where I couldn't see."

    At least 2,097 foreign troops have been killed since the war began, about 60 percent of them American, according to Reuters.

    Violence is at its worst across Afghanistan since the Taliban was ousted by U.S.-backed Afghan forces in 2001, with military and civilian casualties at record levels.

    The crash came soon after one of the deadliest days of the year Saturday, when the Taliban launched scores of attacks across the country in a bid to disrupt a parliamentary election.

    Source: NBC News