Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Afghanistan - update on Chinook crash

Of the 4 troops missing in Afghanistan, two have been reported as dead, and one as ‘slightly injured’. Another remains missing. There was some confusion as to the exact figure since the US released a statement on Sunday saying that the fourth member of the team had been rescued. The BBC eventually received a confirmation on Tuesday that two troops were dead, which they reported on Monday. The US Military statement also said that “the whereabouts of one service member remains unknown."
In reports that have only just emerged, seventeen people, including women and children were killed in a US bombing raid in the eastern province of Konar last week, the local governor has said. The bombing was part of the operation in the Konar province in which US forces with Chinooks were attempting to rescue a number of colleagues stranded in inhospitable terrain where they had been under fire from militants. The President of Afghanistan, Hamid Kharzai, is said to be “saddened” by the incident. He said that there needed to be a “rethink” in the way in which coalition forces carried out there operations. The US said it “regretted civilian deaths” but that “terrorists” were amongst the dead.
[19:56 GMT 05/07/2005]

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