Afghan Plane Crashes in Eastern Afghanistan

Afghan Plane Crashes in Eastern Afghanistan

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A plane operated by Afghanistan's state-owned airline Ariana has crashed in the country's eastern Ghazni province, senior Afghan officials said.

"A Boeing plane belonging to the Ariana Afghan Airline, has crashed in the Sado Khel area of Deh Yak district of Ghazni province around 1:10 pm (08.40 GMT) local time," Arif Noori, a spokesman for the provincial governor's office in Ghazni city, told Reuters.

Official sources in the province said the plane was en route to Ghazni from Herat when it crashed on Monday, Al Jazeera reported.

The plane crashed in a territory under Taliban control, Tolo news reported, adding that Afghan Special Forces will be sent to the crash site.

However, Ariana Airlines told AP that none of its planes have crashed in Afghanistan, according to Mirwais Mirzakwal, the company's acting director.

The state-owned airline also released a statement on its website saying all its aircraft were operational and safe.

The conflicting accounts could not immediately be reconciled, and the number of people on board and their fate was not immediately known, nor was the cause of the crash.

The mountainous Ghazni province sits in the foothills of the Hindu Kush Mountains and is bitterly cold in winter.

The last major commercial air crash in Afghanistan occurred in 2005 when a Kam Air flight from western Herat to the capital Kabul crashed into the mountains as it tried to land in snowy weather.

The 19-year-old war, however, has seen a number of deadly crashes of military aircraft.

One of the most spectacular occurred in 2013 when an American Boeing 747 cargo jet crashed shortly after takeoff from Bagram air base north of Kabul en route to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. All seven crew member were killed.

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