The Taliban said it had shot down a U.S. military plane in the central Afghan province of Ghazni on Monday, killing all personnel on board.
“The plane, which was on an intelligence mission, was brought down in Sado Khel area of Deh Yak district of Ghazni province,” Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban, said in a statement, adding that everyone on board, including high ranking officers, had been killed.
A senior defence official investigating the crash said no senior U.S. official was killed and added that they were still investigating the cause of the crash. No one from the U.S. military was immediately available for comment.
Crashes involving military flights, particularly helicopters, are common in Afghanistan where inclement weather and creaky aircraft are often pressed to their limits in the war-torn country — and where insurgents have been known to target helicopters.
The last civilian flight to crash was in May 2010, when an ageing Pamir Airways plane went down in bad weather during a scheduled flight to Kabul from the northern province of Kunduz.
It was carrying six crew and 38 passengers when it crashed into a mountainside 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Kabul.
SOURCE: AGENCIES, PHOTO: REUTERS