U.S. military officials allegedly confirmed Monday that a surveillance plane crashed in Eastern Afghanistan after reports the jet was shot down by the Taliban.
Afghan government official Arift Noori confirmed to CBS News that bodies of two pilots were found at the crash site. The official believes the plane was flying between the southern city of Kandahar and the capital Kabul. (RELATED: Report: John Bolton Undercuts Trump’s Main Ukraine Defense In Book Manuscript)
Fox News Reporter Lucas Tomlinson confirmed the downed Air Force jet was an E-11A communications plane.
U.S. military official says Air Force E-11A airborne communications plane crashed in eastern Afghanistan Monday with “less than 5” on board.
Plane is military version of Bombardier Global Express business jet.
It’s not clear if anyone survived. No sign U.S. plane shot down.
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) January 27, 2020
Pictures and videos of the E-11 began circulating online, hours later members of the Taliban took credit for it’s downing.
@pajhwok reporter Saifullah Maftoon visited the area in #Ghazni province, where an Aircraft crashed today, #Taliban said few US force officers were killed in this incident. #Afghanistan pic.twitter.com/vJ1fB2kspb
— Pajhwok Afghan News (@pajhwok) January 27, 2020
Video shows wreckage allegedly of reported plane crashed in Ghazni. The markings on the plane bear a resemblance to those belonging to US Air Force. pic.twitter.com/RN5Huz9b40
— TOLOnews (@TOLOnews) January 27, 2020
US Central Command’s spokeswoman Major Beth Riordan declined to confirm or deny the Taliban claims, according to Al-Jaazera.
Initially reports suggested that the crashed jet belonged to commercial airline Ariana Afghan until the companies CEO issued a statement.
“It does not belong to Ariana because the two flights managed by Ariana today, from Herat to Kabul and Herat to Delhi, are safe,” said Ariana Afghan CEO Mirwais Mirzakwal to Reuters.