The U.S. military officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, have confirmed that one of its military aircraft crashed in Afghanistan after the Taliban claimed to have shot it down.
A plane crashed Monday in Afghanistan’s Ghazni province, south of the capital.
According to Reuters, officials said there were no indications so far that the plane had been brought down by enemy activity. One of the officials said there were believed to be fewer than 10 people on board.
The plane, which came down today, has been described as a small military aircraft by American officials. Some sources reported that it was Bombardier E-11A aircraft with 11-9358 number (msn: 9358) assigned to 430th Expeditionary Electronic Combat Squadron.
Fox News also reports a U.S. official confirmed that a communications plane with fewer than five people on board crashed.
A statement from a Taliban spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, said that all passengers, which he claimed included high-ranking CIA officers, were killed.
The 430th Expeditionary Electronic Squadron operating in Afganistan some its uniquely E-11A planes with the Battlefield Airborne Communications Node payload. This aircraft was created to fulfill what is called a joint urgent operational need, when it was identified that the terrain of Afghanistan posed serious communication challenges.
The E-11A provides an airborne data relay and gateway that allows real-time information exchanges between different tactical data link systems.
The BACN program delivers the flexibility required to conduct communications operations in hostile conditions and austere locations, making it an indispensable command and control asset.
BACN provides communications channels and channel conversions in a geographic area where terrestrial services are either restricted or unavailable. BACN offers three service categories: Tactical Data Services, Voice Services and Inter Protocol Services. In general, BACN provides value to users by either extending the range of an external interface, or by converting external interface data from one format to another.