Monday Jan 16, 201201:09 PM GMT
NATO copter crash in Afghanistan kills 3
Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:8PM
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The wreckage of a NATO helicopter is seen in Ghazni province, Afghanistan on December 3, 2009.
A helicopter operated by the US-led NATO alliance has crashed in Helmand Province in southern Afghanistan, leaving at least three people dead, Press TV reports.


Afghan police officials said a foreign military helicopter went down in Nadali district near Shora area in Helmand, 555 kilometers south of the capital Kabul on Monday, citing technical problems as the cause of the incident.

"According to our local police reports, the helicopter was seen on fire in the air before hitting the ground," Helmand provincial police chief said.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for NATO forces in Afghanistan confirmed the incident, saying more information would be made public after an investigation.

"What we can confirm is the crash of a civilian helicopter in southern Afghanistan," the spokesman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said.

"We are aware of an incident in the south of Afghanistan. We are gathering facts and will release more details when we have them," the spokesman said.

However, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the incident in a statement, saying that they shot down the foreign military helicopter and killed all everyone onboard.

The Taliban say they have shot down several aircraft and NATO choppers in different parts of Afghanistan over the past few months.

Last year, Taliban militants downed a US helicopter in Afghanistan's eastern province of Wardak. Thirty-one members of the US Special Forces were killed in the incident which was the biggest single loss of lives for American forces since the 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan.

AO/GHN/HJL/SZH/HGH
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