US responds over reports of shooting down of Military plane in Afghanistan that killed five officials
WAHINGTON - US responds over reports of shooting down of Military plane in Afghanistan that killed five officials.
Taliban spokesman claims the group has shot down a US military aircraft over eastern Afghanistan.
The US military said on Monday it was investigating reports of a crash in Taliban-controlled territory.
Footage purportedly taken from the snowy wreckage site showed the US air force insignia on the charred fuselage.
A spokesman for the Taliban, Zabihullah Mujahid, said in a statement posted online: “An American invader aircraft has been shot down. Lots of officers have been killed.”
He claimed high-ranking CIA officers had been onboard the plane. Neither the footage nor his claims could be verified.
In separate comments, Mujahid told the Guardian the purported shoot-down “has no impact” on the ongoing negotiations over the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. “No agreement has been reached yet and Americans are continuing their attacks too.”
Tariq Ghazniwal, a local journalist, said he saw two bodies but others had counted a total of five.
The aircraft in the footage appeared to show a US air force E-11 Battlefield Airborne Communications Node. It has been described by the air force as “Wi-Fi in the sky”, a roving communications satellite to support missions in remote areas without existing infrastructure.
The Taliban have occasionally been reported to have access to anti-aircraft weapons, including cases where they fired Stinger missiles link of the kind supplied to the rebels by the CIA during the 1980s Russian occupation.