Updated: 17-Nov-2006 Release


Release #2005-53
August 16, 2005
Lt. Gen. Mauro Del Vecchio, ISAF commander, offers his condolences to the Spanish Senior Representative following the crash of a Spanish Cougar helicopter August 16.

HERAT, Afghanistan -- It was confirmed today that 17 Spanish soldiers were killed when the Cougar AS532 helicopter they were flying in crashed near the city of Herat at approximately 1130hrs local time. Five other Spanish soldiers were injured when a second Cougar made a forced landing.

ISAF emergency services were immediately dispatched to the scene and the dead soldiers and the injured were evacuated by helicopter and ambulance to ISAF's military hospital in Herat. The crash site has been secured by ISAF and Afghan National Army soldiers. The wounded are all in a stable condition.

The soldiers are part of international Election Support Forces working as part of ISAF in its mission to assist the people and Government of Afghanistan during the National Assembly and Provincial Council Elections (NAPCE). ISAF wishes to express its regret at this accident and offers its condolences to the families of the deceased soldiers.

Commander ISAF, Lt. Gen. Mauro Del Vecchio, is now in Herat to offer his support to the Regional Area Coordinator (RAC).

The cause of accident is currently unknown and will be the subject of a full investigation. MORE PHOTOS

Contact Information
ISAF Public Information Office

Chief PIO
Lt. Col. Riccardo Cristoni 070 294 823

Maj Andrew Elmes 070-294-850