Six killed in Nato helicopter crash
A Nato helicopter crashed in southern Afghanistan, killing six members of the international military force, the US-led coalition said.
The coalition did not disclose the nationalities of those killed in Thursday's accident but it is understood no British service members were among the dead.
The coalition said that there was no enemy activity in the area at the time of the crash. The cause is being investigated
The crash occurred on the same day seven civilians were killed outside a crowded gate at Kandahar air field, a sprawling base for US and Nato operations, after a suicide attacker set off a vehicle laden with explosives. The Taliban claimed responsibility, saying it was targeting a Nato convoy.
It was the second suicide bombing in as many days in southern Afghanistan, officials said. The coalition said no Nato troops were killed. It does not disclose information about injured troops.
Separately, Afghan authorities reported that avalanches had killed at least 29 people in the country's mountainous north east.
Two witnesses said they suspected the suicide car bomber was trying to hit US forces because he detonated his explosives just as two pick-up trucks, which they say are often used by American special forces, were leaving the base.
Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef said Nato forces opened fire after the bombing and that they killed three of the seven civilians who died. The coalition denied this, saying there was no fighting after the blast.
Earlier, officials reported that the suicide bomber was walking near the gate, but the Afghan Ministry of Interior later said the attacker was driving a Toyota Corolla.
Zalmai Ayubi, the spokesman for the Kandahar provincial governor, said two children were among the seven civilians killed. He said eight other civilians, including two children and one woman, were injured in the explosion.