US Air Force plane crashes in Afghanistan – Taliban claims responsibility
The Pentagon has confirmed that a US Air Force plane crashed in eastern Afghanistan, a territory currently under Taliban control, reportedly killing everyone on board.
The chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force, Gen. Dave Goldfein, confirmed that the plane is a U.S. Air Force E-11 military airplane.
The plane crashed in Deh Yak district, Ghazni province, a territory under Taliban control.
A spokesman for the Taliban terror group said that high-ranking American officers were among the dead after the aircraft was brought down by its terrorists.
Officials told the media there were no indications it had been brought down by Muslim terrorists.
Afghan authorities initially said it belonged to state-owned airline Ariana, but the company issued a denial, saying all its planes were accounted for.
The Pentagon has not released further details and it is unclear how many people were on board.
Speaking to reporters during a Pentagon press briefing, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said that he was “aware of the situation” and that he had “nothing further to report at this time.”
U.S. Forces Afghanistan spokesman Col. Sonny Leggett said in a statement that the cause of the crash was under investigation and that there were “no indications the crash was caused by enemy fire.” Leggett added that Taliban claims of additional downed aircraft were false.