C-130 plane crashes in Afghanistan killing six Americans

Pentagon officials confirmed on Thursday that an American C-130 plane crashed in Afghanistan, killing 11 people including six U.S. service members. The plane crashed at Jalalabad Airport in eastern Afghanistan at about midnight local time. According to a news released from the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, the plane was assigned to the 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, part of the 455th. First responders are still on the scene, and the cause of the crash was under investigation. The civilian contractors were working with “Resolute Support,” the NATO-led mission to train and advise Afghan security forces. It follows the military mission in Afghanistan after combat operations ended at the end of 2014.

A cause for the crash has not been determined. The military official said there were no reports of hostile activity in the area at the time of the crash. The C-130 is a four-engine turboprop aircraft used to transport personnel and oversized cargo. The Taliban have claimed they shot the plane out of the sky, but the group is prone to exaggeration. Air Force Maj. Wickman dismissed the claim “It is with high confidence that we can say it does not appear that enemy fire was involved.” Few other details were available and an investigation was underway, he added. The names of those killed have not been released. The Defense Department does not publicly identify fatalities until 24 hours after their next of kin have been notified.

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