Defense

US Service Member Dies After Helicopter Goes Down In Afghanistan

Anthony Bolante/Reuters

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter

The death toll for U.S. service members in Afghanistan rose Friday after a fatal helicopter crash.

The helicopter reportedly hit a tree while delivering troops to the Kharwar district for a night raid. The collision forced the crew to make an emergency landing, during which one crew member was killed. The six others injured in the crash are receiving medical treatment, according to Stars and Stripes, which cites local sources.

The Taliban claimed to have shot down the helicopter and killed dozens of Americans. “We can confirm the crash was not the result of enemy action,” NATO’s Resolute Support Mission said in a statement. “We have full accountability for all personnel and the crash site has been secured.” An investigation into the incident is already underway.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of our comrade,” Gen. John Nicholson, commander of Resolute Support, said in a statement. “On behalf of all Resolute Support, our heartfelt sympathies go out to the families and friends of our fallen comrade and those injured in this unfortunate event.”

A dozen U.S. service members have died in Afghanistan this year. More than 2,000 Americans have given their lives in service of their country since the U.S. began waging war in Afghanistan 16 years ago.

The latest fatal incident comes amid a build-up of troops in the region to eradicate radical Islamic terrorism.

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