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US military helicopter destroyed in Afghanistan 'hard landing'

The aircraft "hit the ground hard on the way to drop passengers off"

Date of publication: 25 May, 2019

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Passengers and crew aboard a US military helicopter were injured when the aircraft was destroyed during a "hard landing".
Passengers and crew aboard a US military helicopter were injured when the aircraft they were travelling in was destroyed during a "hard landing" in Afghanistan, a US official said on Saturday. 

According to Colonel David Butler, a spokesman for US Forces Afghanistan, a CH-47 Chinook helicopter "hit the ground hard on the way to drop passengers off" during a mission in Helmand province

Butler said the helicopter had been totally destroyed during the landing.

"Both Afghan and US personnel were injured but all are stable and expected to recover," he told AFP

"No hostile fire or enemy contact involved."

Read more: 'US, Afghan forces kill more civilians than Taliban does'

Chinooks, easily recognisable because they have one rotor at the front and one at the back, are the workhorse aircraft for foreign forces in Afghanistan, and are used to ferry troops and supplies across the country.

Nearly two decades after the US invasion, Afghanistan's war rages on, with thousands of civilians and fighters being killed each year.

US forces continue to train Afghan partners on the ground and strike the Taliban movement from the air.

In a bid to end this brutal conflict, a historic "loya jirga" peace summit in Kabul took place earlier this month, with delegates from across Afghanistan demanding an immediate and permanent ceasefire.

Meanwhile, US and Taliban have been engaged in talks in the Qatari capital Doha to stop endemic violence in Afghanistan and negotiate an end to America's longest war.

On 9 May, the United States and the Taliban said they made progress, but at a slow pace, as they wrapped up their latest talks.

Zalmay Khalilzad, the US envoy heading the effort, said that the sixth round of peace talks, held in Doha, began to explore the "nitty gritty" of a peace plan.

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