Helicopter crashes kill 14 Americans: Afghanistan

Fourteen Americans, seven troopers and three civilians, have been killed in a series of helicopter crashes in Afghanistan.

A US statement said seven American troopers and three civilians working for the government died when their helicopter went down early today in western Afghanistan. Twelve Americans and 14 Afghans were injured. Earlier, four other American servicemen were killed when two American helicopters collided in southern Afghanistan. The mid-air collision also left two US soldiers wounded.

US authorities ruled out hostile fire in the collision but have not given a cause for the other crash. The Taliban say they shot down a helicopter in Badghis province of northwestern Afghanistan but it was unclear if this is the same incident.

The helicopter involved in a mishap in western Afghanistan went down during an operation by Afghan and international forces in which a dozen militants were killed, the military said.

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