Afghan Ministry Says Helicopter Crash Killed 2 Crew Members While Patrol in the North of the Country
The Defense Ministry said an Afghan military helicopter crashed in the north of the country after hitting a power line, killing at least two crew members.
ISLAMABAD — An Afghan military helicopter crashed in the north of the country on Sunday after hitting a power line, killing at least two crew members, the defense ministry said.
The MD-530 helicopter was patrolling the area after taking off from northern Balkh province and crashing in Kholim district of Samangan province, a ministry statement said.
Officials said the helicopter struck the base of a high voltage power line before crashing.
It is unclear how many helicopters, including US helicopters, are in the hands of the Taliban-led government. When the US-backed Afghan government collapsed in mid-August 2021, dozens of Afghan pilots fled to Central Asian countries including Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Afghan Air Force pilots have played a key role, alongside their American counterparts, in the 20-year war against Taliban insurgents. The conflict ended with the departure of foreign troops from Afghanistan in 2021. Helicopter airstrikes inflicted heavy casualties among the Taliban and repeatedly drove them out of positions they had seized in different parts of the country .
After the Taliban took control of the country, around 140 Afghan pilots and others were flown from Tajikistan to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates en route to their final destination in the United States.