Taliban Confirms Crashed Plane Belongs to US Military

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said a US Air Force plane crashed in the Ghazni province.

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A plane crashed in eastern Afghanistan’s Ghazni province on Monday, 27 January, officials said.
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A US military aircraft crashed in eastern Afghanistan on Monday, 27 January, a Taliban Spokesman and Afghan journalist affiliated with the militant group said.

Tariq Ghazniwal, a journalist in the area, said that he saw the burning aircraft. In an exchange on Twitter, he told Associated Press that he saw two bodies and the front of the aircraft was badly burned. He added that the aircraft's body and tail were hardly damaged. His information could not be independently verified.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said a US Air Force plane crashed in the Ghazni province. He claimed the crash killed “lots” of US service members. The militant group often exaggerates casualty figures.

Ghazniwal said the crash site was about 10 kilometers from a US military base.

US Army Major Beth Riordan, a spokeswoman for US Central Command, declined to comment when told about the Taliban claim. She earlier acknowledged American military officials were investigating reports of a crash in Afghanistan.

Earlier in the day, Reuters reported that the plane was operated by Afghanistan’s state-owned airline Ariana crashed in the country’s central Ghazni province.

Ariana Airlines, Afghanistan's national carrier, dismissed the claim that one of their planes had crashed in a statement on their website, saying all their aircraft were operational and safe.

The US military said on Monday that it is investigating reports of an airplane crash in the Taliban-controlled territory in Afghanistan.

However, pictures on social media purportedly from the crash site showed what could be the remains of a Bombardier E-11A aircraft, which the US military uses for electronic surveillance over Afghanistan.

"At around 1:10 pm (0840 GMT) a plane crashed in Deh Yak district of Ghazni province. The plane is on fire and the villagers are trying to put it out. We still don't know if it is a military or commercial plane," Aref Noori, Ghazni's governor's spokesman, said.

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