A top general in the Afghan National Army has been killed and at least seven other officials have been injured in a military helicopter crash in Afghanistan's e northwestern province of Badghis.
A spokesman for Afghanistan’s Defense Ministry told RFE/RL that General Mohiuddin Ghori, the army corps commander for western Afghanistan, was killed when the helicopter attempted an emergency landing on November 29 in the province’s Muri Chaq district.
The spokesman, Mohammad Radmanish, said the crash was the result of a "technical malfunction" and was not caused by militants or any hostile attack.
However, the Taliban issued a statement on November 29 claiming responsibility for the crash -- saying Taliban militants had shot the helicopter down.
Ghori had just completed a visit to an Afghan army base in Badghis Province's Bala Murghab district when the crash occurred.
That base is near the Murghab River close to the border with Turkmenistan, an area where Taliban and other militants have been increasingly active during the last two years.
Radmanish said seven others injured in the crash were Afghan officials who had accompanied General Ghori on the visit.
He said the head of Badghis' provincial council and the chief of provincial intelligence were among those wounded.
With reporting by AP and dpa