1 troop killed, 6 hurt in crash
Details unclear on copter downed in Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan — A U.S. service member was killed and six others wounded in a helicopter crash south of Kabul, the U.S. military command in Afghanistan said in a statement Saturday.
The military provided little detail on the circumstances of the crash, which the statement said happened late Friday in Logar province.
The Taliban claimed early Saturday that their fighters had downed a U.S. helicopter in the province’s Kharwar district, where it was to be part of a joint operation with Afghan commandos. The U.S. military confirmed an incident within hours but said it was “not the result of enemy action” and that “we have full accountability of all personnel.” Later in the day, the military sent out another statement announcing the service member’s death and saying that the circumstances of the crash were under investigation.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of our comrade,” said Gen. John W. Nicholson, commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan.
A spokesman for police in Logar province said one member of the Afghan special forces was also wounded in the crash, which had forced the cancellation of the operation.
As the war in Afghanistan continues to grow more violent, and the Taliban introduces deadlier tactics, the Afghan security forces have borne the brunt of the attacks, suffering losses some Afghan and Western officials fear they may struggle to sustain.
Under its new strategy, the Trump administration has promised to send more military advisers and trainers to Afghanistan: Fewer than 9,000 have been publicly declared to be present, but the number may be closer to 12,000.