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Afghan Military Helicopter Crashes, Killing 5

Farah province, Afghanistan
Farah province, Afghanistan

At least five army personnel, all crew members of a military helicopter, were killed late Friday when their aircraft crashed and caught fire in western Afghanistan.

Ghafor Ahmad Jawed, Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman, said two pilots, two sharpshooters and an engineer died when their chopper caught fire after an emergency landing in Khaki Safad district in Farah Province.

“The chopper was on its way from Herat to Farah when it crashed, killing five crew members,” he said.

Mohammad Naser Mehri, provincial governor's spokesman, said the hard landing was caused by a technical problem and the chopper caught fire because it was loaded with ammunition.

Mehri said he doesn’t believe the incident was caused by enemy fire although an investigation is continuing.

The Taliban are in control of most of Farah province, especially Khaki Safad district.

Elsewhere, a roadside bomb

In northern Parwan province, a roadside bomb detonated Saturday near a military vehicle, killing four intelligence service members and a civilian, according to Wahida Shahkar, spokeswoman for the provincial governor.

Shahkar said one military personnel and a civilian were wounded in the blast on the outskirts of Charakar, the provincial capital.

“There was a report of a bomb in a village and when the military personnel rushed to defuse it another roadside bomb detonated near their vehicle causing casualties,” she said.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but Taliban insurgents are active in some areas in Parwan and there have been previous attacks against Afghan security forces there.