Jan 27, 2020 16:23 UTC

An aircraft has crashed in Afghanistan’s Eastern Province of Ghazni, with Taliban militants claiming they have shot down a US forces plane in an area controlled largely by the militant group.

"An aircraft of American occupiers has crashed in Ghazni Province," Taliban Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a Pashto-language statement, adding that all the crewmembers on board have been killed, AFP reported.

Initially Afghan government officials suggested that a Boeing plane belonging to the Ariana Afghan Airlines had crashed and exploded into flames.

But shortly after news broke of the crash, Ariana Airlines Acting CEO Mirzakwal denied that one of the company's jetliners had went down.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Afghanistan also denied reports that the plane was a commercial flight. 

There is no information yet available on the number of passengers or crew.

The aircraft is said to have crashed in territory under the Taliban control and the militants were reportedly seen helping to put out the fire at the crash site.

Afghan Special Forces were headed to the site to investigate the incident

A senior official in Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's office was quoted by Reuters as saying that the plane had crashed near Ghazni Province and authorities were still seeking details.

ME

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